The Economics of Palestine
Economic Policy and Institutional Reform for a Viable Palestine State
Edited by David Cobham, Nu'man Kanafani
Routledge – 2004 – 328 pages
This book aims to set the intense political debates on one side in order to do some serious economic analysis. It assumes that a sovereign independent Palestinian state comes into existence in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, and proceeds to examine the economic policies and institutional reforms which would be appropriate for it. Key recommendations are that such a state should:
* adopt a non-discriminatory trade regime
* introduce a new currency with a currency board and later a hard peg to the euro
* establish a new type of pension scheme combining universal and work-based elements
* adopt an economic strategy geared to the modern knowledge-based global economy and based on the identification of clusters, and
* take a forward-looking approach to the compensation of refugees which relates compensation to the cost of absorbing returning refugees in a viable and growing economy.
Budgetary policy, corporate governance, financial sector reform and foreign aid strategy are also discussed, and an incomplete contracts model of integration is presented.
The contributors are internationally respected economists from a variety of countries and perspectives. Their analysis should be accessible and relevant to readers of many kinds, from students and academics involved with development economics, politics, and international relations through to policy-makers and those with a general interest in the Middle East.
'A peaceful solution between Israel and a Palestinian State will be sustainable and stable only when the Palestinians will enjoy the economic dividends of peace. This book captures the main economic issues and presents the required economic policies that will secure economic prosperity for a newly born Palestinian State.' - Haim Ben-Shahar, Emeritus Professor of Economics, Tel Aviv University
'How should a sovereign Palestinian state design its economic institutions and how should it run its economy? This book contains new and innovative research on these topics. It is essential reading for all those interested in peace and prosperity in the region, irrespective of their political persuasions. It also makes good reading for those interested in the interplay between politics, institutions and economic development.' - Christopher Pissarides, Professor of Economics, London School of Economics
1. Introduction 2. The Choice of Trade Regime Depends on Multiple Other Factors 3. Alternative Currency Arrangements 4. Budgetary and Fiscal Policy 5. The Role of the Financial Sector 6. Company Law and Corporate Governance 7. Structuring a Pension Scheme for a Future Palestinain State 8. Strategies for Economic Development, the Role of Gaza, and the Future of the Refugee Camps 9. Foreign Aid Strategy 10. Absorbing Returnees in a Viable Palestinian State: A Forward Looking Macroeconomic Perspective 11. Incomplete Contracts, the Port of Gaza, and the Case for Economic Sovereignty
David Cobham is Reader in Economics at the University of St. Andrews, Scotland.
Nu'man Kanafani is Associate Professor at the Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University in Copenhagen, Denmark.