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The Japanese Government has provided over €622.000 to support two companies operating in the Jericho Agro Industrial Park (JAIP): Al Masra, and Dates Kingdom. These companies are the seventh and eighth beneficiaries under the Palestinian Authority's PRIDE (Partnership for Regional Investment, Development & Employment) Programme of Incentives to JAIP. The Japanese contribution is being channelled through the PEGASE mechanism.
"As one of the oldest documented cities in the world, Jericho has always been famous for its production of agricultural products. The Jericho Agro Industrial Park is on the best way to take this long-standing heritage to the future," said the EU Representative Ralph Tarraf. "The EU is proud with its close cooperation with Japan to advance this important project. This industrial park is not only taking a lead in the exports of quality products from Palestine, it is also the first one to employ high-level technologies for environmental protection. This makes it hub for innovation and a prime model for sustainable development in Palestine," he added.
“JAIP is a flagship project of Japan's "Corridor for Peace and Prosperity" initiative launched in 2006. Japan has been extending financial, technical, and human resource assistance to enrich the already fertile soil of the City of Jericho, which amounts to approximately 100 million USD including the building of the relevant infrastructure in the city. Given the strategic importance of Jericho in the region, this project could serve to not only strengthen the Palestinian economy but stabilize the entire region.” said the Ambassador for the Palestinian Affairs Mr. Takeshi Okubo.
In order to attract investment in JAIP, the Palestinian Authority (PA) is offering a range of incentives, including tax breaks, to its tenants. In this context, it has established a programme called PRIDE to provide financial assistance to JAIP tenants to help them start their operations in the park. The EU has set up a Pegase programme aimed at channelling funds to the abovementioned PA PRIDE programme (EU support: EUR 2 million, Government of Japan support: EUR 3.2 million). The programme provides financial assistance to eligible JAIP tenants to purchase equipment, machinery, tools and building materials for their operations in the park.
Al Msara is producing soft fruits – flavoured beverages with production capacity of around 16,000 unit per day. The factory will produce flavoured beverages in two sizes (400 ml and 1,500 ml).
Dates Kingdom is producing Dates' Powder bags which will be the first of its kind in Palestine
Most of the European Union's assistance to the Palestinian Authority is channelled through PEGASE, the financial mechanism launched in 2008 to support the PA Reform and Development Plan (2008-2010) and subsequent Palestinian national plans. As well as helping to meet a substantial proportion of its running costs, European funds support major reform and development programmes in key ministries, to help prepare the PA for statehood. Since February 2008, around €2.4 billion have been disbursed through the PEGASE Direct Financial Support programmes. In addition, the EU has provided assistance to the Palestinian people through UNRWA and a wide range of cooperation projects.
Japan has strongly been supporting economic development efforts exerted by key ministries both financially and technically in order to help Palestinians prepare for the future statehood. With this in mind, Japan has been extending such assistance to JAIP, a flagship project of Japan’s “Corridor for Peace and Prosperity” initiative launched in 2006. Furthermore, Japan has been providing support through humanitarian assistance provided by UNRWA, UNICEF and other UN agencies, as well as grassroots development projects through local organizations. The Government of Japan has so far provided approximately USD 1.8 billion worth of assistance to Palestine since 1993.
 Mécanisme Palestino-Européen de Gestion de l'Aide Socio-Economique (PEGASE)
The Office of the European Union Representative:
Shadi Othman (02 5415 867, 0599 673 958)
Representative Office of Japan to the Palestinian Authority:
Hiroshi Set : 059-2919170, 02-298-3370/1