The scope of PLO/PA authority in the field of trade policy and therefore in trade relations with third parties is circumscribed by the terms of the Interim Agreement, signed by the PLO/Israel in Washington on September 28, 1995. (1) The relevant parts of the Agreement which together form the legal basis for the PA’s relations with third parties are found at Article IX and in the Economic Protocol at Annex V. (The Economic Protocol, which defines the Israeli-PLO/PA economic relationship, was signed in Paris on April 29, 1994 and subsequently incorporated with modifications in the Interim Agreement as Annex V.)
Palestine lies on the western edge of the Asian continent and on the eastern extremity of the Mediterranean Sea. Its territory comprises two parts – the West Bank, a landlocked area bordered by Israel and Jordan, and the Gaza Strip, bordered by Israel, Egypt and the Mediterranean Sea. It covers an approximate area of 6,165 km2 (5,800 km2 in the West Bank and 365 km2 in the Gaza Strip).