Gaza exports first shipment of ready-made clothes in 10 years


A Palestinian sewing company in Gaza has exported a shipment of ready-made clothes to Israel for the first time in ten years.

Director of Media and Public Relations in the Palestinian Borders and Crossings Department, Hisham Adwan, said: “One shipment of ready-made clothes and two shipments of vegetables crossed the commercial Karm Abu-Salem crossing on Monday heading to Israel.”

Head of UniPal 2000, Bashir Al-Bawwab, told Quds Press that this is the first time he has been able to export clothes to Israel since 2007.

“The shipment included 3,500 pieces of different kinds and sizes that meet the international quality standard,” he said, noting that they were produced by “skilful” Palestinian workers.

Al-Bawwab noted that this shipment would be followed by one or two shipments every week. “It depends on how much the Israeli authorities are committed to their promise,” he said.

He said that his company is a merger of four sewing factories with a capital of $1.2 million and 200 workers.

Prior to 2000, there were 36,000 Palestinian workers working in this profession as the Gaza Strip used to export up to 1,500 ready-made clothes to Israel and abroad every month. Most of these factories were closed after the strict Israeli measures imposed on Gaza.

All of the remaining factories closed in 2007 after the start of the Israeli-Egyptian siege imposed on the Gaza Strip, which included the almost full closure of all crossings which allow movement in and out of the enclave.

Recently, Quds Press reported that about 25 factories started preparing themselves to resume their work in the light of Israeli promises to allow a number of shipments of ready-made clothes to be exported to Israel every month.