World Bank grants $12.5 million to West Bank Emergency Water Project
The World Bank (WB) has approved a grant of $12.5 million for an Emergency Water Project. The project is part of a broader $75 million program, supported by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the French Development Agency (AFD).
The main benefit of the program is enhanced water supplies to an estimated 400,000 people in the Hebron Governorate including 90,000 people in Western Hebron villages. A survey of 25 villages in the West Bank estimates that Palestinian households now spend as much as a third of their family income on water, adding further financial hardship on the Palestinian populace.
Over the last 30 months, the number of poor in Palestine has tripled to over two million, and 60 percent of households have lost more than half of their income.
"Water shortages in the West Bank and Gaza have become acute. By providing clean, affordable, and consistent supplies of water, this project will make a significant contribution to the welfare of Palestinian families," said Task Team Leader and Senior Financial Analyst Suhail JS Jme'an. The project's components will focus on rehabilitation and improvement of water supply and distribution systems, and technical assistance and capacity building.
This project is consistent with the World Bank's strategy for the West Bank and Gaza, which provides emergency assistance to the Palestinian population while retaining a strong focus on building the economic assets and institutions.
Since September 2000, the World Bank has committed $111.5 million in grants and loans to the West Bank and Gaza. Total donor disbursements reached nearly one billion dollars in 2002 with the World Bank playing an important role in designing and implementing new multilateral donor financing instruments in the West Bank Gaza. — (menareport.com)
© 2003 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)