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last updated Dec. 30, 2009 4:13 PM (EST+7)
Salam Fayyad
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Palestinian politics Palestinian authority Fayyad plan
Salam Fayyad, a member of the Third Way Bloc, is prime minister and minister of finance of the provisional Palestinian government. He has held these positions since the formation of the emergency government in June 2007.

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He served as finance minister under the Fateh-controlled administration from 2002 to 2005. In 2002 he introduced economic reforms to the financial system of the Palestinian Authority (PA) during a difficult period.

Fayyad was born in Deir al-Ghusun village, Tulkarem in 1954. He received his primary education in Nablus, before moving to Jordan for his secondary education. He holds a BSc from the American University in Beirut and a MA degree from Saint Andrews University, Texas. Additionally, he holds a doctorate in economics from the University of Texas.

From 1975 to 1979 Fayyad worked in the private sector in Jordan after which he was employed as a researcher and instructor at Yarmouk University and Austin University (1983-1986). Fayyad has also worked at the World Bank in Washington from 1987 to 1995 and became advisor to the executive director of the bank during this period.

He continued on to serve as the International Monetary Fund's representative to Palestine. He was based at their Jerusalem office until 2001. He became regional manager of the Arab Bank in Palestine for two months in 2002, after which he was appointed finance minister by President Yasser Arafat in June of the same year.

He remained finance minister for two consecutive governments headed by Ahmed Qurei, until he resigned from the cabinet in late 2005 to establish and run the Third Way Bloc, an independent party. The Third Way Bloc won two seats in the parliamentary elections of January 2006.

On March 18, 2007, Fayyad was appointed finance minister of the newly formed national unity government. He met US diplomats and lobbied the European Union for a resumption of aid to the PA. On June 15, 2007 Fayyad was appointed prime minister of the emergency government, following Hamas' takeover of Gaza.

On March 7, 2009, Fayyad submitted his resignation, saying he sought to facilitate resolution of conflicts over his governance believed to be holding up factional agreement in Cairo talks. However, on May 19, he was reappointed to the post of prime minister of the Palestinian Authority.






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