Palestinian high tech grows 88 percent despite Intifada
The number of high tech firms operating from the Palestinian territories increased by 88 percent over the past three years, despite the ongoing Al-Aqsa Intifada. Some 75 Palestinian high tech firms are doing business in the region compared to 40 in 2000, reported the Palestinian Information Technology Association (PITA).
While most academic and economic Palestinian sectors have come to a screeching halt due to the ongoing twenty-seven months of Israeli military actions in the Palestinian Authority areas, the Palestinian Internet community refused to be distracted. IT ventures in the West Bank and Gaza Strip include include software firms and Internet service providers, but “there are still no real start-up companies," said the vice chairman of PITA, Ahmad Abumarzouq, according to Haaretz.
The main market for Palestinian high-tech merchandise is the Arab World, according to Abumarzouq. He asserted that the Palestinian Authority (PA)’s high tech industry has been moderately affected by the activities of the Intifada compared to other sectors. "Via conference calls and the Internet, we can overcome curfews and road blocks, and
be global," he said.
PITA was founded in 1999 as a membership-based organization for Palestinian companies in the IT sector. The association represents approximately 69 companies from various sub-sectors including hardware distributors, software development firms, office automation vendors, Internet service providers, telecommunications, IT consulting, IT training and related businesses. — (menareport.com)
© 2003 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)