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Newsletter March - April 2015

About PSC

The Palestinian Shippers' Council (PSC) was established as an independent, non- for profit organization that represents the interests of Palestinian Shippers, importers and exporters, in addition to local industries as the end-users of maritime shipping, air freight and land transportation.


The PSC also seeks to contribute to the development of the Palestinian economy, through expanding and facilitating trade at all stages of the logistical supply chain.


Trade Facilitation is a key component of Palestinian trade as it’s the vital element towards economic growth, knowing that most of the challenges that faces Palestinian Shippers are reduction of time and transaction cost, which will impact the local economy and eventually will allow them to be competitors in the international markets after overcoming these challenges.

 In this issue:

  • About PSC
  • PSC graduates the first class for its "Supply Chain Management Program" -Training Unit
  • Technical unit - Cargo Insurance -Technical Advice 
  • Legal unit - Breach of Trademark - Legal advice-
  • Interview with  Mr.Jamal Jawabreh - FPCCIA
  • Interview Ms. Randa Jamal - UNCTAD  
  • Interview with Mr. Wael Hijazi -  PSC Member
  •  A training workshop on “Warehouse and Training Management” 31-March-2015
  • Greece study tour

Expectations of  External Trade Sector 2015:
In the Pessimistic Scenarioit will be:

  • Decrease  In the value of Palestinian imports by 3.3%
  • Decrease in Palestinian exports by 4.4%

(Source: Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics -PCBS)

 

 PSC graduates the first class for its "Supply Chain Management Program" -Training Unit



As part of the Capacity Development for Facilitating Palestinian Trade Project, with the generous support of the Canadian Government, The Palestinian Shippers’ Council celebrated the graduation of the first professional training program entitled "Supply Chain Management Program" in partnership with the Ministry of National Economy, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), and in collaboration with the Center for Continuing Education (CCE) - Birzeit University.
During this important event, with the presence of all project partners, 16 participants received their certificates from PSC Board of Directors’ member and stakeholders presenting the private sector. The Professional Training Program covered in a period of six months, incorporated technical and practical, national and international supply chain familiarities and practices including material in the areas of shipping and transportation management, clearance, payment methods, incoterms, regulatory procedures, covering international trade as terminology, conventions and procedures. The training program also, included study visits to ports and warehouses, aiming to improve the performance of the Palestinian business men and women in the private sector, and its impact towards reduction in costs and time spent in foreign trade transactions.
Ms Rita Asfour, the facilitator of training and awareness unit in the Palestinian Shippers' Council added " I have observed the growth of the evolution of all the components of this training program, as well as materials have been applied and adapted to the Palestinian context using international and local expertise, and delivered in classroom trainings for a period of 6 months, Ms. Asfour declared that 16 participants were able to go through the different steps of the supply chain and experienced a growth in knowledge and practical experience on the different national and international procedures of the imports and exports.
Ms. Asfour, has recommended to participate actively in this specialized training program, not only for their contribution to transfer the theoretical and practical knowledge, but also because of its significant impact in the refinement of performance and development of skills which will reflect positively on their companies, resulting in cost and time reduction throughout the overall supply chain stages.”

 Apply Now, (Click Here to Apply).
For any further information please contact Training Unit/PSC

 

Interviews

Mr. Jamal Jawabreh
Secretary General of FPCCIA

Federation of Palestinian Chambers of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture "FPCCIA", Secretary General Mr. Jamal Jawabreh, declared out in his speech expressing their sincere vision and mandate, “An important pillar of FPCCIAs vision and mandate is to facilitate and promote Palestinian trade and products locally and internationally. FPCCIA and PSC have strong coordination and cooperation to raise awareness to Palestinian businesses through training seminars and workshops highlighting SME's needs and interest.


Both organizations (FPCCIA & PSC) presenting private sector, have joint scope to enhance and promote Palestinian products and trade, by focusing towards increasing market share of the national products in the domestic market and internationally. Jointly, we can assist Palestinian products and services to penetrate internal markets by providing awareness, information about promising markets and conducting market and research assessments, studies, guidance and escorting.

Mr. Jawabreh believes that PSC's should expand services to cover lobbying against Israeli imposed impediments that hinder Palestinian trade from one hand, and lobby with PA government to support Palestinian export from second hand, through proposing and implementing business modules that can be applicable to support export.”

In his closing, Mr Jawabreh, expressed his gratitude to PSC performance during the last years, he said:" PSC in the last three years have shown progress in providing quality services and expand their beneficiaries as a result of the strong cooperation with all Palestinian chambers of commerce.

In addition to, services have been expanded to reach a wide range of businesses specially those operating in marginal areas.”

Mr. Jawabreh, is a prominent private sector figure, whom has long experience in developing the private sector through his capacity as General Secretary of the FPCCIA.

 

Q&A Session – Mrs. Randa Jamal

The economic officer in the assistance to the Palestinian People Unit, Division of Globalization and Development Strategies, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development – UNCTAD.

Below you will find the full interview with Mrs. Randa Jamal.

• Could you define the role of UNCTAD in strengthening and enhancing the Palestinian Shippers Council (PSC)?

The role of UNCTAD in the provision of technical cooperation is significant, not only in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT), but world-wide. While UNCTAD has technical cooperation projects already defined and have been implemented in many countries in the World, the project on developing Palestinian trade facilitation capacity was specifically tailored to the special needs of Palestinian traders. This was achieved through a two-pronged approach: 1) consolidate the institutional capacity of the Palestinian Shippers' Council by increasing the awareness among Palestinian (exporters and importers) and also to strengthen the national capacities of other Palestinian agencies through the provision of training and advisory services. The overriding objective of the project is to exert all efforts to reduce the overall cost of Palestinian trade, which is extremely costly due to measures imposed by the occupation authorities. To a great extent, this objective has been achieved through a process of learning by doing for the PSC as well as the knowledge conveyed to and gained by the Palestinian Private Sector operating in the field of trade facilitation.

Recently during a graduation ceremony, held in Ramallah, on 5 March of 2015, to provide certificates to over 12 students and professionals, one graduate indicated that his company saved more than one million NIS due to the training and know-how gained through working with the UNCTAD and the PSC. UNCTAD's expertise in providing the knowledge and top experts in these domains made considerable gains. These gains have indeed made the Palestinian government, UNCTAD and the PSC partnership worthwhile, all towards empowering the Palestinian private sector.

After more than three years of supporting PSC capacity building and activities, how do you observe the evolvement of the PSC?

This is perhaps one of the most important questions to respond to after three years of implementation, day in and day out. With confidence, it could be said that our collective efforts and contributions transformed the Palestinian Shippers' Council from a small organization with a few staff to an institution that has a clear mandate, various units, serious human capital in place, and mainly tangible services to offer the Palestinian private sector. This transformation, along with the achievements that came with it, had made this project a prime example for successful technical cooperation in the face of arguments deeming such attempts as fruitless. Indeed it was the approach oriented towards the local context and its needs that proved a success. For example, international expertise were solicited when there were no capacities available locally; however and ultimately, their know-how needed to be


combined with local efforts, taking into consideration the constraints of occupation, and all that it entails. Looking at fruitful examples of trade facilitation is fine and useful; however, the local context requires an intricate understanding of all the policies adopted, some of which are based on political agreements, or the lack of them. This is why the local expertise significantly enhanced the quality delivered.

• How do you see PSC role towards providing wider range of services to the Palestinian business women?

With gender mainstreaming workshops and presentations on the role of women in international trade, the PSC is well equipped to deal with gender issues and are sensitive to their needs. The PSC, along with UNCTAD, ensured to consistently solicit female participants across all the workshops and activities held under the project, in addition to the training programme. In a nutshell, the participation of females was always a priority. More importantly, the PSC, throughout the implementation of the project, provided incentives to females that were not offered to their male counterparts. For example, female students were entitled to a discount when enrolling in the training programme. Also the UNCTAD and the PSC forged key partnership with organizations that are dedicated to women's issues; such as, the Palestinian Business Women Forum, providing significant knowledge on the trade facilitation supply chain. Additionally, the legal and technical units of the PSC gave female business women priority in having any of their legal or technical concerns addressed.

• What is your message to PSC members?

My messages to the PSC members are several, although the most important one would be that in the case of the Palestinians, national aspirations should remain on the top of the entire trade facilitation supply chain. What I precisely mean by this is that Palestinian trade cannot be discussed, without first and foremost addressing Israeli occupation and all the hurdles it imposes on the movement and access of Palestinian people, good and trade, not only with the outside World but also within the occupied Palestinian territory. This should be the main topic that needs to be addressed in any messaging that comes from the PSC members in particular and/or the Palestinian private sector in general.

 

 

 

Technical unit - Cargo Insurance - Technical Advice


The decision of whether or not to insure your freight is not always a clear-cut, simple choice. There are many factors to consider, such as the total value of the goods shipped, the shipping origin and destination, the mode of transportation, etc. Once the determination is made, the next question is how to insure the shipment. To assist you in your evaluation, the options below outline the types of coverage available:

 

Legal Liability:
For international shipments the legal liability set forth by the Warsaw convention is $20.00/kg or the actual value of goods if less than $20/kg. For international sea freight shipments the legal liability limit is $500 per customary shipping unit. (FCL: 1 container = 1 shipping unit, LCL: shipping units = piece count on the Ocean Bill of Lading)

Insurance of Goods Only:
To ensure your shipment for the replacement of the goods shipped in case of total or partial loss or damage, request insurance for the replacement value of the goods=commercial invoice value.
Sample Insurance Calculation:
Commercial Invoice Value = $10,000.00
Insurance Cost: $60.00

Insurance of Goods + Shipping Charges:
To ensure your shipment for the replacement of the goods shipped in case of total or partial loss or damage plus the cost of shipping the freight, request insurance for the CIF value of the shipment.
CIF + 10% Terms
(Commercial invoice value + insurance costs + freight= CIF value x 110% (10% for any unforeseen costs or charges))
This type of insurance covers your shipping costs too in the case of damage or loss . Recoverable freight charges may be prorated based on the portion of the shipment damaged in the case of partial loss/damage.

Sample insurance of goods + freight charges:
Commercial Invoice value = $10,000.00
Insurance Cost = $60.00
Freight Cost: $500.00

Total CIF Value = $10,560.00 x 110% = $11,616.00 = Amount to Insure
Insurance Cost = $69.70
 
For any further data and information don't hesitate to contact the PSC / Technical Unit
 
 
 
 

 

Contact us
Ramallah, Palestine
Tel: +970 (2) 297-6286
E-mail: pr@psc.ps
 

 Legal Unit - Breach of Trademark - Legal Advice

Palestinian Shippers' Council calls for caution and vigilance when importing any similar product to other product that known in the existing markets and has trade mark legal protection.

This means that the producer or the official importer of the product can arrest the goods at the border by the enforcement of law and customs authority, if there is a similarity between the original product and the imported one, and this may eventually leads to the destruction of the goods and bears extra expenses.

In a live case, recently the Israeli court issued a decision once the Palestinian importer imported energy drink that largely similar to the tray of (XL energy drink), but was renamed (X2), In one of the shipments the color of the drink box was blue with blue bubbles and writing in red, and in a second shipment the colors were changed, the court decided to destroy the first shipment and prohibited import of this product because they violate trademark law, however, in the second shipment, the court did not prohibited the import because it is at the discretion of the court will not mislead the consumer, and thus help the importer to achieve profits at the expense of the original product that has been imitated.

Accordingly, we advise the importers to be very careful when importing any similar product to a well-known product in the markets; because the violation of the trade mark law could result in huge losses. On this occasion, we encourage all importers to contact the PSC for legal advice in this context before starting the import to ensure that the imported product is not violating any protected trade mark, hence if the imported goods have been arrested in the argument of trade mark’s breach, importer should directly contact any legal entity.


For any further information please contact PSC / Legal Unit

 

A training workshop on “Warehouse and Training Management”:

31-March-2015

To help Palestinian traders gain the logistical skills needed to analyze the supply chain processes, ensure quality, create value, and manage the flow of information among supply chain partners, so as to add value and help achieving a competitive edge.

Under the supervision of the UNCTAD staff, PSC staff and in the collaboration with MONE and financing of Canadian Government, a training workshop on “Warehouse and Training Management”  have been organized and held on 31 - March-2015.

Eng. Hani Kort Chairman of the Board of Directors of PSC added: "In the Palestinian extraordinary case, the reduction of any costs on trade, affects greatly the Palestinian economy, as the importance of training and education in these subject pose a financial burden on the merchant and affect the competitiveness of Palestinian goods, on one hand, on the other hand, these financial burdens don’t contribute to the Palestinian economy.

 

Interview with Member-PSC

Mr. Wael Hijazi, Nestle Company’s representative for Shipping and Forwarding, said that PSC was able to save large sums of money, in regards of the cost of clearance for the company’s imported products, where they managed to reduce storage costs by 50%, In addition to increasing the time efficiency for the clearance process by reducing the time spent in customs to one third on average, through participating in the training workshops provided by the council, In addition to the field visits to ports and crossing borders, and meeting with relevant agencies such as the customs, warehousing and shipping companies, where we had a chance to look closely at the procedures and learn how to deal with them efficiently.
Mr. Hijazi said: “we were able to reduce the time and cost dramatically, in addition to communicating with the ports and the official authorities, instead of strictly dealing with the customs broker, which increases the possibility to interference in any phase of the supply chain."
As a PSC member, Mr. Hijazi called the Palestinian shippers to benefit from the Council’s services, establish strong relationships with members, and exchange experiences with them.

 

 Greece Study Tour

 

Under the project of Capacity Development for Facilitating Palestinian Trade, and in partnership between UNCTAD and the Palestinian Shippers' Council, and in collaboration with the Ministry of National Economy, and with funding from the Canadian government, and in coordination with the Palestinian Embassy in Greece, the Palestinian Shippers Council organized a study tour to Greece (Athens and Thessaloniki) and Macedonia (Skopje), to learn about the special procedures of import and export of goods through the crossings and through seaports in various neighboring countries or geographical regions.


The study tour aimed to:
Raising the awareness among Palestinian private sector on the land-locked model, similar to the Palestinian reality in terms of the nature of the geographical reality (the nature of land –locked model ) and specifically the model of ( logistic and transport), and get acquainted with the available means to overcome the obstacles, and spreading the know how & knowledge by training, which can be applied to the case of Palestine and to promote mutual cooperation scope which would help in finding alternative models, support the supply chain that suit and eventually can boost the Palestinian economy.

 

Participants in the tour: Mr. Raed Fattouh, a representative of the Palestinian crossings and Mr. Ra'ed Malki the head of programs at the Canadian Representative Office and members of PSC Board of Directors, in addition to the executive management and technical staff of the council. The tour included a visit to the port of Piraeus and the port of Thessaloniki and crossings points of transport, shipping and logistics companies Greek and international commercial enterprises, also the participants visited the customs territory and internal stores and at the crossings in Macedonia and between Macedonia and Greece, as well as transport, shipping and customs clearance, in addition to private warehousing.