The Economy Ministry organized a business fair in Tel Aviv to support businesses in the Gaza border area this week.

The recent security situation in the Gaza border area discouraged residents and tourists from visiting the south at the height of the tourist season and summer vacation. In light of the lost business revenue, the  in Tel Aviv is meant to allow the Israeli public to support of small and medium-sized businesses located in the Western Negev. Over 60 business owners from the Gaza area will participate in the fair called Oteif B‘Keif, which roughly translates into "Enveloped by Fun," as the Gaza border area is also known as the Gaza Envelope.

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Minister of Economy Eli Cohen said, "I call on the Israeli public to attend the Oteif B‘Keif fair to support the small and medium-sized business owners in the Gaza area. It‘s our responsibility to ensure the safety and economic security of the Gaza area residents. The small and medium-sized businesses in Israel in general and the southern periphery in particular spur the economic growth of the Israeli business market and it‘s vital to give them the support they need to succeed."

The Ministry of Economy hopes that the fair, which will display various cultural and business activities taking place in the area, will increase economic growth and encourage Israelis to attend additional activities that will take place in the upcoming weeks. Kibbutz Kfar Aza resident Orit Tzadikovich talks about her firsthand experience with Gaza rocket fire shot at her kibbutz overnight, August 9, 2018 (The Israel Project)

The fair "Oteif B‘Keif" will take place in the Tel Aviv Port Market from Tuesday to Thursday, August 28th, 2018 – August 30, 2018 from 4:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. The fair will also be held in the city of Sderot during Chol Hamoed Succos from Wednesday – Thursday on September 26th, 2018 and September 27th 2018.

The fair will include booths that display the services of guest house providers, restaurants, alternative healers, cultural and health events, and blue and white agricultural products from the Gaza area including cherry tomatoes, pineapple, and raspberries.

There will also be sales booths displaying handmade arts and crafts, including jewelry and wooden toys, Southern Craft beer (Forty Degrees in the Shade, Beer of the Negev), and clothing and cosmetics.

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Several special performances will take place over the three days of the fair in Tel Aviv, including art shows, cooking shows, and band productions. Family oriented activities will be also be offered.

The Jewish Agency also announced that it will grant loans of up to 100,000 shekels to business affected by the rocket fire from the Gaza Strip through the Ness Fund for the Development of the Negev. The assistance will focus on businesses in fields of commerce, tourism and services, since agriculture business are handled by the Israeli government.

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