Ramallah, June 24, 2008 – The Prime Minister of the Palestinian Authority, Dr. Salam Fayyad, and the World Bank signed today a US$12 million grant for the Electric Utility Management Project.
The Electric Utility Management Project will rehabilitate and expand the distribution network in West Bank and Gaza and will install new supply substations in the northern, central and southern areas of the West Bank. The project will also provide technical assistance to power distribution utilities to improve their operating efficiency and will explore options for the development of renewable energy resources of the West Bank and Gaza.
“A reliable and efficient electricity distribution system is important for ensuring energy security to growing demands in the Palestinian areas,” said David Craig, World Bank Country Director for West Bank and Gaza, “We also aim at reducing the fiscal burden of the power sector on the Palestinian Authority.”
The project will lower power supply costs and enable substantial growth in electricity purchases. It will help complete the formation of a new power distribution utility to serve the northern region of the West Bank (NEDCO) and consolidate the electricity departments of Municipal Councils, Village Councils and Refugee Camps into the power distribution utilities in the West Bank.
Its overall estimated cost is about US$140 million and will be co-financed by the European Investment Bank, European Commission, Norway, Sweden and Agence Française de Développement (AFD).
The Electric Utility Management Project is the second electricity project funded by the World Bank to benefit the Palestinians consumers. It builds on the completed Electric Sector Investment Management Project of US$91 million to improve the quality and quantity of electricity supply to all power users.