RAMALLAH, Monday, November 23, 2020 (WAFA) - Prime Minister Muhammad Shtayyeh said today that after his government receives all withheld clearance funds without any deductions it will help it overcome the difficult financial situation it has been facing since May and will pay all arrears.
“The rights of employees are a priority for the government, and we will pay all the arrears in one payment as soon as we receive our full money from the Israeli side, and if we do not receive all of it, we will spend what we will receive,” said Shtayyeh speaking at the start of the weekly cabinet meeting held in Ramallah.
The Palestinian Authority (PA) refused in May to receive the monthly tax funds Israel collects on behalf of the PA, amounting to around $200 million, following the severance of relations in light of Israel’s decision to annex a large part of the occupied West Bank.
However, the PA recently decided to resume relations with Israel after it said that the reasons for severing ties have ended with Israel’s decision to suspend its annexation plan.
“We will receive part of the money at the end of this week, and we will pay the salaries as a priority, then the health sector benefits from private and public hospitals, suppliers of medicines and medical equipment, then help the poor and the unemployed, then contractors and small suppliers, and bids to supply and equip the security services, and pay government loans from banks,” he said.
“The crisis that we have suffered has affected the employees and the security services, retirees and tens of thousands of social aid recipients, private sector companies and others,” he said.
He pointed out that the payments will provide liquidity that will address part of the outstanding issues and revive the Palestinian market and will enable the government to return to complete its programs in support of education, economy and agriculture, and the health sector.
The Prime Minister stressed that the relationship with Israel is that of an occupied people and an occupying state, and it is not a security or financial relationship, but rather a relationship of an occupied people who wants their freedom and struggles to end the occupation.