06 Jun 2019
Global financial bodies including the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank plan to be present at a U.S.-led conference on the Palestinian economy this month that the Trump administration has cast as an overture to its peace plan.
The efficacy of the June 25-26 meeting in Bahrain has been in doubt since Palestinian leaders and businesspeople decided to shun it over Washington’s perceived pro-Israel bias and inattention to their political demands.
Israel’s new election, an upsurge in cross-border fighting and the Palestinians’ resentment at U.S. recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital add to the complicated backdrop.
However, the IMF, which has been operating in the West Bank and Gaza since 1995, confirmed it and other institutions would be present in Bahrain’s capital Manama.
“The IMF has been invited to the meeting and expects to attend, along with other international financial institutions,” a representative said.
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) confirmed it would have “someone” representing it. A World Bank spokesman said it had an invitation “and expects to attend”.
Lenders and development banks have long played a stabilizing role in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, providing loans, credit guarantees, and policy advice to the Western-backed Palestinian Authority (PA).
By Rami Ayyub, Reuters, 5 June 2019
Read more at Reuters
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