Newly formulated plan by Dutch govt. will catalyze export of Gaza-produced goods to foreign markets. “Economic independence in Gaza within 3-4 years”
Gaza Strip agricultural association managers met with representatives of the Dutch government and the agricultural coordinator of the Gaza Coordination and Liaison (DCL) in order to discuss a new initiative to catalyze development of agricultural exports from the Gaza Strip.
The meeting was held in preparation for the upcoming flower export season in Gaza. "The Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories supports agricultural export and will assist as much as possible in providing materials necessary for farming as well as instruction and guidance,” said Gaza DCL agriculture coordinator, Mr. Uri Madar.
At the meeting, representatives of the Dutch Government presented the plan to consolidate its various aid programs and thus provide more efficient support to Palestinian farmers and to the Gaza agricultural industry at large. Unlike previous efforts, the new plan will focus on developing the farmers’ skills and capabilities in order to achieve economic independence.
"By taking steps to transfer all farming and exporting responsibilities to local firms, Palestinians in the Gaza Strip will acquire independence in both fields within three to four years,” explained the Dutch representative.
Dutch aid programs began operating in the Gaza Strip back in 2006, with the not-so-long-term objective of achieving economic independence by 2016. According to the Dutch representative, development of farming and export of agricultural goods to foreign markets are essential for this process.
Already during the previous export season, over 450 tons of strawberries, 250 tons of tomatoes, 50 tons of peppers and 9,000,000 flower units were exported to markets abroad. The next export season is due to begin this November.