Hundreds of people took part in a mass demonstration in Ramallah on Wednesday to protest the new tax laws and the high cost of living.
Protesters held banners reading "Yes to a national economy that protects the citizen’s dignity”, “People want to overthrow the new tax law”, and “18 shekels for one kilo of chicken, and 80 for meat, that’s if officials don’t know.”
The demonstration was organized by a Facebook group called "Against the High Cost of Living and Tax Increases."
A statement from the organizers said that "it is no longer reasonable that the Palestinian street stays silent about this fruitless economic policy."
"The government should immediately back down from the new tax law and instead of using an economic policy that puts pressure on people and increases their poverty, the government should help in strengthening the resilience of the people through social security, health insurance and the fight against unemployment," the statement added.
The role of the government is to provide a "decent life" for its citizens, the group said, stressing that the PA should adopt economic policies based on the support of the people.
The group said they will continue to organize demonstrations until the new laws are changed.
The protests follow Ramallah-based prime minister Salam Fayyad's recently announced austerity measures, which he hopes will help make up for a growing PA budget deficit.
New income tax measures have been introduced to ease the shortfall, which raised the personal tax rate to a minimum of 5 percent and maximum of 30 percent.
More entities will be subject to taxation, and tax rates on land and property trading will also be raised, Fayyad said last week.