Cost of living raises for Gaza Strip and West Bank.
PNN exclusive / Ali Samoudi -- Prices are spiraling out of control
with families unable to keep up. The unions are trying to take care of
the workers they represent, but the Palestinian economy was struggling
under closure and occupation long before the global market failure that
became pronounced in 2008. Bassam Zakarneh delivered good news to public
sector employees today, including civil service and military personnel.
The Palestinian Ministry of Finance will issue January payments on
Sunday and within them will be a cost of living increase."Based on
an agreement with the Government and the Ministry of Finance, salaries
will be disbursed for the first time since beginning the national
application of the Law of Civil Service with cost of living raises
included for the month," the head of the Union of Civil Service
announced.The new law is considered a "great achievement" for
cooperation and coordination between the government and trade unions.
The cost of living index is being applied based on standards created by
information gathered by the Statistics Bureau regarding the amount paid
for food per family per month.The union leader also appealed to the
government to pay the people of the Gaza Strip prior to Sunday in
preparation for the very real possibility that Israeli forces will
undertake a new wave of major attacks. Zakarneh also urged the Monetary
Authority to make every effort in assuring that banks are able to pay
salaries in the Strip. During the closure that preceded the January
attacks several bank branches closed due to a lack of cash. Liquidity
was also a major obstacle for the operation of the United Nations Relief
and Works Agency. Its Gaza spokesperson Adnan Abu Hasna told PNN at the
time that the UNRWA did not have the shekel to give to refugee school
children for lunch.
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