An email for sales department staff in the Palestinian territories is being sent out to Palestinian shop owners and farmers, with instructions for how to open a new business in the territory.
The email, which was obtained by Al Jazeera, says the new business should be established within 30 days of receiving the written authorization from the Palestinian Ministry of Agriculture.
“It is not possible for the department to do business in these areas,” the email says.
“Therefore, it is advised that the company name be changed and the name of the company be changed to the name that is used in the new company.”
The department’s response to the email states that the department is not required to comply with the Palestinian ministry’s directions.
“We do not know the reasons for this,” the department said in a statement.
“The department has not received any formal orders from the ministry.”
The Palestinian Authority (PA) and Israel are both involved in the West Bank and Gaza.
The Palestinian Agriculture Ministry is a part of the PA.
In November 2015, the ministry opened a shop in the city of Hebron in the southern West Bank, in an attempt to provide employment for farmers in the area.
The shop was closed by the PA following the announcement that the shop would not be allowed to operate, despite the fact that the ministry had been working on it for over a year.
Israel, which has an armed forces that are involved in more than 2,000 settler-occupied West Bank settlements, was among the main beneficiaries of the shop.
According to the Palestinian Authority, the department opened in Hebron to provide economic opportunities to Palestinian farmers, who are unable to get work elsewhere.
The new business is part of a program by the Palestinian Agriculture Minister to attract new businesses to the West, in a bid to open up the region to foreign investment.
In 2016, the Palestinian government said it planned to open 150 new shops in the occupied territories.