That estimated dollar amount reflects a -91.1% plunge from $1.065 billion 5 years earlier during 2017.
Year over year, the overall value of exported Palestinian goods reduced by -91% compared to $1.055 billion for 2020.
Palestine’s top 3 most valuable exports are dates, olive oil, and medication mixes in dosage. Collectively, that trio of exported products accounted for 69.2% of overall revenues for Palestinian export sales during 2021.
Palestine’s Top Trading Partners
The latest available country-specific data shows that 98% of products exported from Palestine were bought by importers in: Israel (84% of the global total), Jordan (5.4%), United Arab Emirates (1.7%), United States of America (1.4%), Saudi Arabia (1.2%), Turkey (also 1.2%), Kuwait (0.8%), United Kingdom (also 0.8%), Qatar (0.6%), Germany (0.3%), Algeria (0.2%) and Italy (also 0.2%).
The State of Palestine’s population is 5.3 million, comprised of 3.2 million people in the West Bank plus another 2.1 million living in the Gaza Strip. Therefore, Palestine’s total $94.7 million in 2021 exports translates to roughly $25 for every resident in the Middle Eastern country.
Palestine’s unemployment rate was 24% as of July 2022, down from 26.4% one year earlier in July 2021 per Trading Economics.
Palestine’s Top 10 Exports
The following export product groups represent the highest dollar value in Palestinian global shipments during 2021. Also shown is the percentage share each export category represents in terms of overall exports from Palestine.
From the more granular four-digit Harmonized Tariff System code level, monumental or building stone represent Palestine’s most valuable exported product followed by ethylene polymers, virgin olive oil, tobacco cigarettes and fresh or chilled cucumbers.
- Fruits, nuts: US$48.5 million (51.2% of total exports)
- Animal/vegetable fats, oils, waxes: $15.7 million (16.6%)
- Pharmaceuticals: $6.2 million (6.5%)
- Stone, plaster, cement, asbestos: $4.2 million (4.5%)
- Vegetables: $4.1 million (4.3%)
- Coffee, tea, spices: $2.6 million (2.7%)
- Vegetable/fruit/nut preparations: $1.8 million (1.9%)
- Aluminum: $1.5 million (1.6%)
- Raw hides, skins not furskins, leather: $891,000 (0.9%)
- Cereal/milk preparations: $871,000 (0.9%)
Palestine’s top 10 exports generated 91.1% of the overall value of overall Palestinian global shipments in 2021.
Fruits and nuts was the lone gainer among the top 10 export categories, up by 8.8% from 2020 to 2021.
The leading decliner among the top 10 Palestinian export categories was stone, plaster, cement and asbestors which shrank by -97.2% outpacing Palestine’s sales of expor0074ed aluminum (down -95.6%) and vegetable, fruit or nut preparations (down -87.5%).
At the more detailed 4-digit Harmonized Tariff System code level, the most lucrative exports from Palestine are dates (46.5% of Palestine’s worldwide total), olive oil (16.2%), medication mixes in dosage (6.5%), monument or building stones including related artwork (3.5%), frozen fruits and nuts (2.7%), spices (2.6%), fresh or chilled miscellaneous vegetables (2%), and miscellaneous nuts (1.9%).
Products Attracting Palestine’s Best Trade Surpluses
The following types of Palestinian product shipments represent positive net exports or a trade balance surplus. Investopedia defines net exports as the value of a country’s total exports minus the value of its total imports.
In a nutshell, net exports represent the amount by which foreign spending on a home country’s goods or services exceeds or lags the home country’s spending on foreign goods or services.
- Fruits, nuts: US$47 million (Reversing a -$94.9 million deficit in 2020)
- Raw hides, skins not furskins, leather: $573,000 (Reversing a -$5.3 million deficit)
- Collector items, art, antiques: $550,000 (Reversing a -$71,000 deficit)
- Lead: $401,000 (Down by -51.2% from 2020)
- Cork , articles of cork: $42,000 (Reversing a -$122,000 deficit)
- Woodpulp: $12,000 (Reversing a -$470,000 deficit)
Palestine has highly positive net exports in the international trade of fruits and nuts, notably dates and almonds.
Products Causing Palestine’s Worst Trade Deficits
Palestine incurred an overall -$1.04 billion product trade deficit for 2021, down by -79.2% from -$5 billion in red ink one year earlier in 2020.
Below are exports from Palestine that result in negative net exports or product trade balance deficits. These negative net exports reveal product categories where foreign spending on home country Palestine’s goods trail Palestinian importer spending on foreign products.
- Vehicles: -US$186.1 million (Down by -12.2% since 2020)
- Pharmaceuticals: -$109.3 million (Down by -42.2%)
- Cereal/milk preparations: -$76.3 million (Down by -49.0%)
- Machinery including computers: -$66.4 million (Down by -71.5%)
- Electrical machinery, equipment: -$50.1 million (Down by -82.1%)
- Milling products, malt, starches: -$41.1 million (Down by -42.8%)
- Tobacco, manufactured substitutes: -$38.0 million (Down by -79.2%)
- Optical, technical, medical apparatus: -$37.4 million (Down by -62.1%)
- Sugar, sugar confectionery: -$29.2 million (Down by -59.2%)
- Vegetable/fruit/nut preparations: -$27.6 million (Down by -39.2%)
Palestine has highly negative net exports and therefore deep international trade deficits under the vehicles category, led by cars, trucks, and automotive parts or accessories.
Palestinian Export Companies
Not one Palestinian corporation ranks among Forbes Global 2000.
Wikipedia lists exports-related companies from Palestine. Selected examples are shown below.
- Cremisan Cellars (winery)
- Jawwal (cellular network products)
- Lone Tree Brewery (beer, other beverages)
- Paltel (telecommunications)
- Sinokrot (food products, bottling)
- Taybeh Brewery (beer, other beverages)
See also Top Middle Eastern Export Countries, Israel’s Top 10 Exports and Jordan’s Top 10 Exports
Central Intelligence Agency, The World Factbook Middle East: Gaza Strip. Accessed on October 8, 2022
Central Intelligence Agency, The World Factbook Middle East: West Bank. Accessed on October 8, 2022
FlagPictures.org, Palestine’s flag. Accessed on October 8, 2022
Forbes, 2021 Global 2000 rankings, The World’s Biggest Public Companies. Accessed on October 8, 2022
Foreign Trade , United States Census Bureau. Accessed on October 8, 2022
International Trade Centre, Trade Map. Accessed on October 8, 2022
Investopedia, Net Exports Definition. Accessed on October 8, 2022
Trading Economics, Palestine’s GDP per capita (GDP based on Purchasing Power Parity). Accessed on October 8, 2022
Wikipedia, Category: Companies based in the State of Palestine. Accessed on October 8, 2022
Wikipedia, State of Palestine. Accessed on October 8, 2022