About the Federation
The federation of Palestinian chambers of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture was established in1989 in Jerusalem as the umbrella organization for all chambers (Jerusalem Chamber was established in 1936, Most chambers were established during the 40s and 50s in the last century) in the West Bank and Gaza, as a legal and autonomous body representing the interest of all chambers and the private sector. Its mandate is derived from the chambers' law, which defines the legal boundaries for the federation’s operations.
The Federation’s membership base includes 18 chambers (13 in the WB and 5 in Gaza). Currently more than 65,000 businesses registered in all chambers; which represent nearly half of the operating businesses in Palestine. It is worth mentioning that chambers have shown the significant increase of members due to the improved services and the development of new ones as well i.e. chambers are service oriented organizations.
Board of Directors
President: Omar Hashem
The Federation’s Vision & Mission
Towards an effective partnership in building a strong Palestinian economy, and the leadership of a dynamic and influential private sector
The Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry aspires to:
√ Enhance the performance of the Chambers of Commerce and Industry and its contribution to the economic development through the provision of quality services to its members and the private sector as well.
√ influence and participate in policy-making and economic legislation in the interest of the private sector
√ strengthening relations among national, regional and international chambers.
√ promoting of national product.
Strategic objectives of the federation:
1. Strengthening the institutional structure of the federation.
2. The development of services provided.
3. Promote local investment relations and regional and international federation
4. More lobbying and advocacy
Activities & Services
Based on the federation's mandate, mission and strategic objectives; the following functions represent the guiding frame of FPCCIA’s operations:
• Representation of the private sector..
• Lobbying and advocacy.
• Networking on National, Regional and International levels.
To fulfill these roles; the Federation recognized that strengthening and enhancing the capacity of chambers is of paramount importance.
Organizational structure of the federation
1- The Federation Council and General Assembly
The Council consists of all chairmen of the chambers which is currently 18 members, where they elect the chairman and other executive BoD among them, as has been stipulated by the chambers' law. The council is an elected body and its mandate is specified by the chambers' law and the general assembly. In other words the council is accountable to the general assembly.
The General Assembly is defined by the chambers law to reflect the total chambers’ boards of directors, and that by definition brings the general assembly to be on average of no less than 170 members. The role of the general assembly inter alia is fundamentally to approve the federation strategic objectives and policy framework.
2- Executive body: this refers to the senior and junior staff (8 employees), who are responsible for the actual day-to-day operations of the federation, and responsible for implementing the council decisions and policies.
• General Secretariat
• Economic Department.
• SMEs Unit.
• Information Department.
• Administrative and HR dept.
• Public Relations.
• Secretary and Archiving.
First: At the National Level:
Established a strong relationship with the Palestinian National Authority
• Ministry of Finance and Planning
• Ministry of Labor – The Federation is a key Member of the steering committee of the TVET beside the Ministry of Education and Higher Education, Social partner (Tripartite) with the Ministry of Labor and Trade unions.
• Ministry of National Economy – The federation maintains Strong linkages with both Ministry of National Economy as a referral ministry for the federation.
• Ministry of Agriculture.
• Palestinian Monetary Authority – Consultation banking policies and credit scheme.
• Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics – Exchange of information.
• PIEFZA: Board member of the Palestinian Industrial Estates and Free Zone Areas.
• PSI: Board member of Palestinian Standard Inst.
• PIPA: Palestinian Investment Promotion Agency
• PSCC: The federation chairs the private sector coordination council which consists of private sector organizations.
Second: At the regional and international level:
• Built strong linkages with the private sector supporting entities especially financial institutions such as Palestinian development Fund and banks as well as establishing links with other international financial intermediaries; the World Bank, IFC.
• The Federation is an effective member in the General Union of Arab Chamber of Commerce, Industry (GUACCIA) and Agriculture.
• Member and BoD member of the Islamic Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture.
• Member of ILO as an employer organization.
• Member of Arab Labor Organization (ALO).
• A member of World Chamber Federation (WCF).
• Member of the Association of Chambers of Commerce and Industry of the Mediterranean Countries (ASCAME)
• Established linkages with foreign similar activities institutions, e.g. Rotterdam Chamber of Commerce and Industry, French Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Cologne Chamber of Skilled Crafts in addition to other networks and relations.
Achievements and Current Activities:
• Prior to defining of the new strategy; the federation intervention and activities were based on the defined roles and needs of chambers. Donor support was limited and geared for specific activities:
o Cooperation with ILO (International Labor Organization): As representatives of employer organizations (Social Partners) the federation participates in all meetings and workshops aimed to improve relationships between employer, employee, government and policy and legal matters. We also had support from ILO to implement projects related to the development of SMEs, Training and Employment, together with funded studies and workshops related to SMEs.
Technical Vocational Education and Training:
- Cooperation with GiZ-BTC: The federation is a major partner in TVET system representing the private sector. The chairman is of FPCCIA is a member of the Higher council of TVET beside MOL and MOEHE. The staff as well as the secretary general of FPCCIA are involved in different levels and committees of TVET in Palestine. PALESTINESKILLS, this initiative launched by mid of last year where we as FPCCIA took the initiative to prepare Palestine to participate in the WORLDSKILLS competition that will be organized in Abu Dhabi, Oct, 2017.
- TVET Partnership Palestine Project: A cooperation project between MOL and FPCCIA from the Palestinian side and Cologne Chamber of Skilled Crafts -Germany. The objective is to enhance needs-oriented TVET qualifications that increases employability of trainees, ensure in-come and supports the competitiveness and growth of SMEs. The project covers 9 governorates and the federation but all chambers can benefit from the project activities. The first phase started Feb, 2016 and will end Sep, 2018.
- Employment Generation: The Federation implements and plays important role in employment generation for the youth either through a financial aid from donor organizations or through the joint cooperation with the Ministry of Labor and the private sector. the projects based on salary subsidies for the new graduates where they are hosted in the private entities for a 6-12 months’ work based training.
- Private Sector Development Cluster Project (PSDCP): Following the conclusions of the strategic review and formulation of design principles validated by national stakeholders, and in order to tackle all the different levels of identified needs, the cluster approach was found to offer a relevant scale of intervention. It combines a sufficient closeness to the field dynamisms with a capacity to mobilize the needed institutions in a pragmatic bottom-up way and will contribute on field basis to the macroeconomic policies.
The main objective of the project is to strengthen the competitiveness of local companies, and especially MSME, in order to increase their market share on local market and/or explore new markets for export through (1) a support to the structuring of productive sectors/sub-sectors with high potential, by the creation of linkages between the stakeholders of the same value chain on a defined territory through the cluster approach and (2) an improvement of public-private dialogue.
The project consists of three main components:
Component 1: Technical assistance to animate and coordinate clusters
Component 2: Support for clusters’ collective projects
Component 3: Dialogue, sector watch, capitalization, and policy making
The project is implemented in full partnership between the public and private sectors; a team of the Ministry of National Economy will lead the implementation of the third component in relation to policies, capitalization, and dialogue. The Federation of Palestinian Chambers of Commerce, through hosting the Operation Unit of the Project, will lead the implementation of the first and second components regarding the development and animation of clusters in addition to support of clusters’ collective projects and through the utilization of proper international expertise supported by local expertise in an aim to ensure effective knowledge transfer and providing for the success of the project within the Palestinian economic context.