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Source: OPEC Fund for International Development
17 June 1999



Innsbruck, Austria, June 17, 1999

The OPEC Fund for International Development today extended a grant of US$200,000 to help finance the second phase of a project to establish a College of Technology at An-Najah National University in Nablus, Palestine. The college is being built to help meet Palestine's current and future demands for skilled technicians and engineers.

At present, few vocational and technical education centers exist in the Territories. This deficiency has led to a severe shortage of qualified professionals in the important fields of technology and engineering. The development of such a knowledge base is imperative if Palestine is to succeed in its efforts towards economic advancement and self-reliance.

Work on the new college started in May 1996 with construction of the academic building itself. Phase two is already underway and includes electrical and mechanical works as well as exterior and interior finishing. This stage also covers provision of equipment and furniture for the many classrooms, workshops and laboratories.

Once operational, the college will offer 2- and 3-year academic and vocational training programs, plus state-of-the-art application-oriented study programs in the area of modern engineering. In addition to expanding the currently sparse technical and vocational education base in northern Palestine, the new facility will introduce modern specializations in engineering and industrial fields, and provide young Palestinians with the necessary skills to help them secure suitable employment.

In September 1996, the OPEC Fund extended a grant of US$500,000 in support of phase one of the project.

Sector: Education
Project: Establishment of a College of Technology (Phase II)
OPEC Fund grant: US$200,000
Beneficiary: Palestine
Total cost: US$7.9 million (Phase II)
Cofinanciers: Saudi Fund for Development, Islamic Development Bank, Government of Germany
Executing agencies: An-Najah National University, Scientific Foundation of Hisham Hijjawi
Grant administrator: Arab Fund for Economic and Social Development
Project duration: August 1998 – February 2000

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