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Source: United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA)
12 December 2011

Palestinian refugees hardest hit in the West Bank

According to new UNRWA report

12 December 2011

According to a new report by UNRWA, despite modest economic good news in the West Bank, the number of unemployed refugees grew by nearly one per cent in the first half of the year, to over 50,000 people, as unemployment generally in the West Bank declined. At 27.4 per cent, the unemployment rate for refugees is about 5 percentage points above the average of the West Bank as a whole.

“These figures show once more that the refugees continue to bear the brunt of economic hardship in the West Bank,” said UNRWA spokesman, Chris Gunness, “making the need for our emergency services greater than ever.”

The report finds that “in the context of 3.7 per cent overall employment growth, refugees lost ground in the public sector, where their employment declined 2.9 per cent in the sequential period. Total employment growth of refugees was about 1.5 per cent year over year, well below the overall rate of job growth for non-refugees in the West Bank.”

According to the report, the average nominal daily wage fell 2.3 per cent for employed refugees in the first half of 2011 relative to the second half of 2010. At US$ 25.8, it was 14.4 per cent below that of non-refugees. And with the average number of days worked per month falling 1.1 per cent, the average nominal monthly wage for refugees declined 3.4 per cent to US$ 565.4, or nearly 15 per cent below that of non-refugees.

Full report (PDF)


Christopher Gunness
UNRWA Spokesperson
Mobile: +972 (0)54 240 2659
Office: +972 (0)2 589 0267  

Sami Mshasha
UNRWA Arabic Spokesperson
Mobile: +972 (0)54 216 8295
Office: +972 (0)2 589 0724

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