D. On June 25 and 26, the US-sponsored economic conference will be held in Bahrain’s capital, Manama. The conference focuses on the financial part of the Trump administration’s forthcoming peace plan. Prior to the conference, the White House announced the financial plan, which will strengthen the Palestinian economy by providing a $ 50 billion aid package. The plan can only be implemented through an Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement. The plan will help create one million jobs.
The 40-page plan, which US Special Adviser Jared Kushner will present in Manama, will “unleash the economic potential” for the Palestinians, “enable the Palestinians to realize their ambitions” and “strengthen the Palestinian government”, writes the Times. of Israel.
Neither Israeli officials nor Palestinian officials attended the conference. The Palestinians have refused to participate and generally refuse to cooperate with the Trump administration after the United States moved its embassy to Jerusalem. Israeli officials and ministers are not invited to the conference, but a delegation of Israeli businessmen will represent the Jewish state.
A representative of the Trump administration says that the focus of the conference is the economic aspect, not the political one.
Arab countries such as Egypt, Jordan, Morocco, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Saudi Arabia have all said they will attend the conference.
The plan – which has been formally named “Peace to Prosperity” ( peace for prosperity) – if the plan is implemented, will double the Palestinian gross domestic product. It will create over a million new jobs in the Palestinian territories, which will drastically reduce Palestinian unemployment (according to The World Bank, unemployment stood at 31% in 2018) and reduce the proportion of Palestinians living below the poverty line by 50%.
The White House wants the financial plan to be funded mainly by Arab countries and wealthy private investors. Most of the money goes directly to the West Bank and Gaza, but some funds can also be channeled to neighboring countries such as Jordan and Egypt.
Of the $ 50 billion, 26 billion are loans, 13.5 billion are grants and 11 billion will come from private investment.
Some critics believe that the political aspects of the peace plan must be resolved before the economic one. Kushner has replied that the economic gains can only be realized through a political solution to the conflict. This is also emphasized by the United States in the document they have published:
“With the support of the international community, the vision is within reach. But it is the Palestinian people who ultimately hold the key. Only through peace can the Palestinians achieve growth and prosperity.”