To ask Her Majesty's Government what is their response to the findings by an Israeli economist, Shir Hever, that as much as 78 per cent of the humanitarian aid intended for Palestinians is diverted to Israelis.
20 March 2018
UK officials have seen the report, which claims that 78% of international development aid money for the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPTs) is used to import goods from Israel. We cannot confirm the validity of this claim, but we note that the report does not claim that international development aid is not reaching the intended Palestinian beneficiaries for humanitarian purposes. DFID implements a robust monitoring and evaluation system to ensure that UK aid reaches the intended beneficiaries and achieves the best development outcomes, with a strong focus on ensuring value for money for the UK taxpayer. As the report notes, the Palestinian economy is highly reliant on Israel for trade, particularly for the imports of goods and services. According to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, trade with Israel accounted for around half of Palestinian trade in 2016. The UK consistently calls on the Israeli Government to ease movement and access restrictions in the OPTs to help unlock trade opportunities with other countries.