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French Version

Palestinians unable to import IT goods.

JORDAN (Star) - In defiance of International Trade agreements and the Paris Economic Protocol agreement signed between the Palestinian National Authority and Israel, Israeli authorities are inhibiting Palestinian IT companies from importing networking and communication products by detaining them at Israeli ports.

While there is no restriction on the importation of mobile phones or networking and communication equipment, Israeli authorities cite the lack of authorization from military authorities as justification for their actions and continue to deny authorization even after the companies apply as required.

The detainment of products imported from companies like Hewlett Packard, 3Com, Siemens and Cisco results in losses to both the exporting and importing companies and forces Palestinian companies to buy equipment from the Israeli market. This reality is causing speculation regarding the political motives behind the Israeli strategy.

The ban on importing networking and telecommunication products began approximately three months ago and targets all private companies. Not only are companies unable to release products seized by Israel, but there is also a delay in importing any new equipment because Israel now requires companies to apply for additional certificate authorizing each individual product to be imported. Previously companies applied for only one blanket certificate authorizing shipments each year.


Amman,09March2002
The Star redaction
The Star


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