In 2018, the Judea and Samaria Chamber of Commerce engaged the Milken Innovation Center at the Jerusalem Institute for Policy Research to create a strategic roadmap to guide the Chamber called the Regional Development Financing Initiative (“RDFI”). The Milken Center is an internationally recognized expert in development strategy for emerging economies and the effective use of impact investments as a catalyst.
The resulting RDFI provides a broad-based assessment that takes full account of long-standing development problems in the region, including the anti-normalization bans on commerce from the Palestine Authority on the one hand, and the transportation limitations and restrictions rooted in Israel’s security policy on the other.
While clear-headed about long-broken parts of the regional economy, the Milken Center’s report also identifies areas of strength for the Chamber to grow and build upon. The RDFI cites a motivated, entrepreneurial business community; a substantial and available workforce in proximity to Tel Aviv; and a growing base of pragmatic integrated businesses. From this foundation, the RDFI outlined five areas for focused development and investment as most attractive for the region:
- Technology and Industry, including the emerging Innovation Ecosystem
- Environmental Renewal
- Commerce and Service
- Cultural and Recreational Tourism
- Transportation and Infrastructure
IBR is committed to helping advance these industries through advocacy and increased impact investments to Integrated Businesses in the region.