Some 80 per cent of the Gaza Strip’s factories were damaged because of the strict Israeli blockade, leading to their complete or partial closure, a senior official said.
In a press statement issued yesterday, the head of the Popular Committee Against the Siege Jamal Al-Khudari stressed that the annual direct losses incurred by the industrial sector exceed more than $150 million.
He attributed this to the tightened blockade as well as the prevention of entry of raw and construction materials to the private sector, pointing out that there are more than 200 types on the list of banned materials.
He pointed out that such measures, supplemented by the targeting of the economic sector, resulted in exacerbating the suffering of Gazans, with a large number of factories and workshops being closed in whole or in part. This has negatively impacted the poverty rate, which exceeded 80 per cent, and the unemployment rate, which stood at 65 per cent.
Al-Khudari pointed out that the occupation selects the banned raw materials carefully to ensure that the economic wheel is stopped and thousands of workers, engineers, construction companies and factories are obstructed.
“Stopping the factories’ work and turning them into iron structures destroys them completely and damages the different equipment and devices, in addition to the electricity crisis which significantly affects the work of such factories,” he added.
The head of the Popular Committee Against the Siege demanded the international community put pressure on Israel to open the commercial crossings, allow import and export operations, cancel the list of banned goods and enable the industrial sector.