Making money on the backs of others

Who says that becoming a compliant colonial administrator isn’t good for business?

Running a power plant in Gaza might sound like a losing venture but, thanks to payments from the cash-strapped Palestinian government, its owners are making profits and promise another year of “unstoppable growth”.

While Gaza’s 1.5 million residents, blockaded by Israel, face electricity shortages, the Palestine Electric Co.’s (PEC) profits were $6.3 million in 2008, up from $4.4 million in 2007. Profits are largely distributed in tax-free dividends.

The gains came even though the plant has been operating at less than half capacity due to the embargo that chokes fuel and spare parts, and past bombings by Israel.

Critics decry what they call a lopsided deal that guarantees the PEC a fixed annual fee from the Palestinian Authority, which is bankrolled with aid from Western governments.

Just the latest reason that the Palestinian Authority has become increasingly unpopular due to corruption, collusion with the West and achieving nothing in return.

The occupation continues to grow.

Text and images ©2024 Antony Loewenstein. All rights reserved.

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