Ban on the import of cement into Gaza for the private sector results in scarcity and price increases
28 April 2016
Prior to the recent restrictions, since October 2015 an average of 75,000 tonnes per month of controlled cement has entered Gaza for the private sector through Kerem Shalom crossing, primarily to address the house repair and reconstruction needs for the over 171,000 units which were damaged or destroyed during the 2014 hostilities. Most of the previously entered shelter repair and reconstruction material has already been sold to beneficiaries.
The Shelter Cluster reports that organizations providing assistance have had to suspend cash assistance for house repairs to over 1,370 families as a result of scarcity and acute price increases. In addition, payment to 1,550 families scheduled to start reconstruction are being delayed due to the lack of available cement. Over 75,000 people whose homes were destroyed or severely damaged during the 2014 hostilities continue to suffer from prolonged internal displacement due to access restrictions on basic construction materials and a lack of funding. According to the Palestinian Contractors Union, the current shortage of cement is disrupting the jobs of 40,000 people working in the construction sector.