Israel will increase by 16,000 the number of West Bank Palestinian workers it lets into the country. Some 1,000 of those workers will be specifically for the hotel industry and the rest will perform work in the construction industry, the committee for the Coordination of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) announced Wednesday. The decision by COGAT comes after a discussion held between Israel’s Defense Minister Benny Gantz and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, COGAT said in a statement.
COGAT Major General Rassan Alian, who spoke on Wednesday with senior PA officials, said in the statement that further measures will be taken in order to strengthen the economic ties between Israel and the PA. The decision to increase the number of Palestinians working in Israel was taken in order to strengthen the economic ties between Israel and the PA, according to the statement.
“In the conclusion of a long administrative work, and as part of a comprehensive move to strengthen the economic ties between Israel and the P.A., a decision has been made to increase the quota of Palestinian workers in Israel. This measure will strengthen the Israeli and Palestinian economies, and will largely contribute to the security stability in the area of Judea and Samaria. Economic stability is the key to preserve the security in the region,” Alian said.
Palestinians from Gaza are not permitted to work in Israel.