Ma'an News Agency
June 1, 2010 - 12:00am

Bethlehem - Ma'an - Over 125 projects will be presented to investors attending this year's Palestine Investment Conference in Bethlehem beginning Wednesday, which will see 2,000 conveners, Palestinian Authority Minister of National Economy Hasan Abu Libdeh said.

Each projects' feasibility will be discussed during PIC, giving investors the chance to "build relations between businesses," the minister told Ma'an on Sunday.

The conference will focus on small to medium enterprises, which Abu Libdeh said the ministry is keen on promoting during the conference.

While the minister did not divulge the details of the various projects, he said they cover all sectors "with budgets for small projects estimated at 150,000 US dollars, with bigger deals estimated in the millions."

Of the 2,000 conveners, 1,100 are Arab investors, of which 850 are originally Palestinian, the minister said. Over 100 invitations were extended to Palestinian businessmen and women with Israeli citizenship, excepted to contribute significantly during the conference, analysts say.

Israel recently announced that it would facilitate travel for Arab investors - an unprecedented move which allowed for the large number of Arab financiers expected at this year's conference. Abu Libdeh said that while "we were satisfied with the level of Israeli response, there remains a number of requests remaining unapproved."

"We have ridden the second conference of the mistakes during the first," the minister said, citing the decision to focus on small and mid size projects rather than large enterprise.

Additionally, unlike the first conference, infrastructure will be on the PIC agenda, and the large contingent of Arab and foreign investors is likely to boost its outcome.

Significantly, he said, the Palestinian Authority has worked on making the public aware of the potential outcomes of the second conference, in order to avoid unrealistic expectations which followed the first.

"The ball is in the investors' court, particularly as small projects formulated by the private sector will be presented," the minister said.


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