Jun 25 2015
Following appeared in the Jordan Times newspaper
By Daoud Kuttab
The absence of a political horizon has strengthened Palestinians’ attempts to reach a different form of independence.
Failure on the political front made them work on a more doable idea: to empower Gaza and the West Bank economically through improving trade with their natural Arab environment.
Jordan, which has the longest border with Palestine and the only way in and out of the West Bank, is perfectly situated to help it carry out an accelerated economic boost that can focus on trade, investment and joint projects.
Joint visits by economic, business, industry and tourism Palestinian and Jordanian officials, along with connecting Jericho and other Palestinian areas to the Jordanian electric grid appear to be key components of this process.
But European diplomats working quietly on this front noticed that attempts to improve trade exchanges between Jordan and Palestine are not moving quickly.
Instead of a win-win situation for each side, the trade exchange is apparently subject to political constraints.
Jordanian-Palestinian relations under President Mahmoud Abbas and His Majesty King Abdullah are unprecedented.
Yet, one can detect a certain hesitation in this relationship on the part of the Jordanian government.
Jordan’s uneasiness with the Palestinians was recently revealed in a meeting between a senior official and journalists. Continue Reading »