Friday, May 27, 2011

Luxury Cars Coming To Gaza!

People need field experience and Palestine sounds cool and dangerous because it can be described as a war zone, but in reality it’s quite safe and has all the comforts that internationals want. Quality of life here is so much higher than somewhere like Afghanistan, but we don’t tell anyone so that we are not replaced or reassigned.”
Emily Williams, an American project manager at a medical NGO, in Why Your Streets Are Full of Foreigners, This Week in Palestine, May 7, 2011

Maybe one of the comforts those internationals like is the fancy cars in Gaza:
Luxury cars with Libyan plates are becoming a common sight in the Gaza Strip, a surprising side-effect of the unrest in the north African country.

Showroom owner Amin said he paid taxes on each car to Gaza’s Hamas government and the tunnel smugglers, and that there were now “dozens” of vehicles coming in from Libya every week. Customers tended to want 2011 and 2012 Hyundai Sonatas, Kia and Hyundai SUVs, BMWs and 4-wheel-drive Toyotas, he said.

...Cars start at $24,000, with sedans going for $48,000 and SUVs costing as much as $100,000, he said.

...The average monthly income for a Gaza family is just $250, but the area is home to a small class of affluent merchants as well as thousands of employees of international aid agencies who qualify for preferential loans at local banks.
But even if the luxury cars are not targeted towards the average Gazan, let's not forget what Gaza offers Gazans as well:

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