Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA) have finally agreed to end a five-month-long trade war.
Naija News recalls that the trade war opened a new front in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict last year when the Palestinian authority announced a boycott of Israel’s calves. The Authority exercises limited self-rule in the occupied West Bank under interim peace deals.
In response to the boycott, Israeli Defense Minister Naftali Bennett in January announced a halt to all agricultural imports from the PA, which in turn prompted the Authority to end imports of Israeli agricultural products.
Palestinians in the West Bank send over two-thirds of their farming exports to Israel, whose agriculture ministry says the calves boycott affected around 400 Israeli cattle breeders, costing them a total of $70 million since October.
A final tit-for-tat move in the trade dispute came on Feb. 8, when Israel’s defence ministry banned all Palestinian exports through Jordan, apparently in an effort to entice the PA to lift its ban on Israeli calves. In a statement announcing the agreement, Israel’s defence ministry said that “the calf boycott has been lifted, (and) trade with the PA will be restored accordingly”.