The Steering Committee of "Monshati" Holds its First Meeting
The Governor of the Palestine Monetary Authority (PMA), Dr. Feras Milhem, inaugurated the first meeting of the Steering Committee for the National Framework "Monshati", which was held today at the PMA headquarters in the Ramallah and Al-Bireh Governorate, with the participation of Dr. Estephan Salameh, Advisor to the Prime Minister for Planning and Aid Coordination, and Ms. Yvonne Helle, Special Representative of the Director-General of the United Nations Development Program UNDP, and Mr. Omar Hashem, President of the Federation of Chambers of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture, and in the presence of the Deputy Governor, Mr. Mohammad Manasrah, and members of the Steering Committee.
The Governor welcomed the attendees, praising the efforts of the partners and the team working on the Monshati platform, and thanked the government for their sponsorship of the national framework "Monshati" since its establishment. He also thanked the United Nations Development Program and the Federation of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, and Agriculture for their continuous support and cooperation.
The Governor indicated that the PMA’s partnership in the national framework "Monshati" came to provide technical support to micro, very small, small, and medium-sized enterprises, and to provide them with the support they need to develop their technical, administrative and financial skills and facilitate their access to financing sources, in addition to the PMA’s launch of “Istidamah” fund to provide financing for projects and to expand the base of beneficiaries by providing soft financing programs, especially the micro-enterprise financing program at zero cost, to contribute to the support and development of this sector, and to enhance its role in economic development.
The Governor clarified that despite the short period of launch of the Monshati platform, the initial data of the interaction volume of the platform users and the requests for assistance that were received are promising, pointing out that the number of users of the platform reached 2,270 users, 38% of which are females. In addition, the platform received 145 requests for funding, and the number of training provided by the platform reached 12. The beneficiaries included 18.5% of start-up projects, 69% of existing projects, and 12.5% of individuals, while the number of consultations provided was 1,311.
The Governor clarified that the systems for providing electronic payment services have been developed, which will help empower project owners and enhance their chances of success and growth of their projects, especially since a large part of them is done through e-commerce.
Ms. Yvonne Helle said in her speech that the data of the framework of “Monshati” reflects the efforts made by the partners, stressing the importance of obtaining continuous feedback, to conduct modification and development processes and identify emerging needs, the most important of which is expanding the partnership base to cover various disciplines, and providing the financial support needed to ensure the continuity of "Monshati".
As for Mr. Omar Hashem, he explained that the planned goals of “Monshati” have been achieved at a high rate, and “Monshati” has become one of the platforms and development initiatives that are referred to in terms of services, technical content, and information that it provides, stressing the importance of adding other offices to “Monshati” in the chambers of commerce in the various governorates of the country in order to expand the base of beneficiaries.
In turn, Dr. Estephan Salameh thanked the partners on behalf of the Prime Minister, Dr. Mohammad Shtayyeh for their efforts in making “Monshati” a success, pointing out the need to expand the base of its beneficiaries and focus on marginalized areas to ensure that they receive financial, technical, and legal support for their projects.
The meeting concluded with some recommendations, most notably the invitation of the Steering Committee of the Technical Committee of “Monshati” to set a development plan for the “Monshati” platform and to discuss the need to amend public policies, according to the results and data that were reviewed.
The attendees also recommended the necessity of developing a plan to link the “Monshati” platform with the e-government, regarding the issue of registering projects benefiting from the platform and working to introduce new partners for the “Monshati” project, including an Islamic bank that contributes to providing information on Islamic financial services, and searching for financing opportunities to ensure the future sustainability of “Monshati”.
It is worth noting that the national framework “Monshati” is supervised by a steering committee co-chaired by the PMA and the UNDP - representatives of the Prime Minister's Office - and the membership of the Ministry of National Economy, the Ministry of Finance, the Federation of Chambers of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture, PalTrade, the Bank of Palestine, and the Banking Institute.
The Steering Committee develops and/or amends legal and policy documents prepared by the Administrative Coordination Unit for local and virtual assistance offices (the electronic platform) that reflect the needs of micro, small and medium enterprises, and allocate and approve the budget for the national framework to support and develop these facilities and provide resources to fill the necessary funding gaps, in addition to assessing and maintaining the effectiveness of help desks, in alignment with government priorities.
For more details, you can visit the Monshati platform: www.monshati.ps