Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz and Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad on Tuesday agreed on arrangements for transferring goods between Israel and the Palestinian Authority and the related tax procedures.
The objective of the arrangements is to better facilitate the movement of goods and reduce illegal trade and tax evasion.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu praised the plan, saying, "The new arrangements are part of our overall stated policy to support the Palestinian society and to strengthen their economy, and will hopefully further our relations with the Palestinians in other areas as well."
The plan will allow the Israeli and Palestinian tax authorities to employ advanced technologies for monitoring and exchanging information on goods transfers instead of calculating tax clearances on reported transfers, as is currently done. The plan also aims to establish Palestinian storage facilities and construct pipelines for the safe and exclusive transfer of petroleum products from Israel to the PA.
"The cooperation between our two tax authorities will assist in fighting tax evasion, in increasing the revenues of the Palestinian Authority from the proper collection of taxes, and in reducing illegal trade," Steinitz said.
Fayyad added that "these arrangements will also improve the economic relations between the Palestinian Authority and Israel" and expressed gratitude toward Steinitz and Netanyahu for their efforts.