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PA signs trade agreement with China

Nov. 30, 2017 7:23 P.M. (Updated: Dec. 1, 2017 1:49 P.M.)
Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah (AFP, File)
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an)-- The Palestinian Authority (PA) and the government of China signed a “memorandum of understanding” on free trade between the two countries on Thursday , according to official PA-owned Wafa news agency.

Wafa reported that the Palestinian Minister of National Economy, Abeer Odeh, and deputy Chinese Minister of Commerce, Wang Shouwen, signed the memorandum on free trade in the presence of Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah and China’s ambassador to Palestine, Chen Xingzhong, at Hamdallah’s office in Ramallah.

According to Wafa, Hamdallah “praised China's continuous support for Palestine and pointed out the importance of China's participation” in an industrial zone to be built in the Hebron district of the southern West Bank.

Hamdallah lauded the industrial zone as a project that “will contribute to reinforcing the national economy and to the creation of jobs in Palestine.”

Hamdallah also briefed the Chinese minister and ambassador on the obstacles facing development in Palestine as a result of the Israeli occupation, particularly in Area C, which is under complete Israeli control and makes up around 64 percent of the area of the West Bank.

All Palestinian construction is banned in Area C, unless Palestinians get nearly-impossible-to-obtain Israeli-issued building permits.

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