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Source: World Bank
31 December 2004



WEST BANK AND GAZA

INFRASTRUCTURE ASSESSMENT

Finance, Private Sector and Infrastructure Group
Middle East & North Africa

December 2004

PrefaceI
Executive SummaryII
I.Introduction1
Objectives and Scope1
The Context2
The Palestinian Authority's Response3
Bank Strategy5
Towards a Strategy for Infrastructure Sector Development5
II.Cross Cutting Issues6
Increasing Access to Key Assets and Resources6
Developing Backbone Networks and Supply Sources7
Developing Commercially Oriented and Financially Viable Regional Utilities7
Adoping a More Sustainable Financing Strategy and Encouraging Private-Sector Participation9
Establishing Efficient Regulatory Frameworks12
Safeguarding and Protecting the Environment13
III.The Subsectors14
A.Water and Wastewater14
Introduction14
Supply and Demand15
Institutional Framework17
Donor Investments18
Issues18
Developing Options and Investment Program19
B.Electricity20
Introduction20
Supply and Demand20
Institutional Framework21
Donor Investments22
Issues23
Developing Options and Investment Program24
C.Transport25
Introduction25
Supply and Demand25
Institutional Framework28
Donor Investments28
Issues29
Developing Options and Investment Program29
D.Communications32
Introduction32
Supply and Demand32
Institutional Framework34
Developing Options and Investment Program35
IV.Towards a Strategy and a Program: The Way Forward37
The Scenarios37
Budget Estimates37
/...

PREFACE

This assessment reviews the performance of the Palestinian water and wastewater, electricity, transport, and telecommunications sectors in the West Bank and Gaza over the last decade. It identifies the major issues each sector is facing and proposes short- and medium-term options for their future development. The assessment emphasizes institutional questions, particularly the need to build local capacity and to provide an environment that encourages private-sector participation.

Reliable infrastructure is vital to improving Palestinian quality of life and helping build a platform for private investment. Due in large measure to the conflict of the past four years, infrastructure development in the West Bank and Gaza has faltered badly, and the quality of services now available is far from adequate – despite substantial financial resources from donors. Restrictions on internal movement and on direct international access have seriously constrained commerce and trade, while Palestinian access to water resources remains seriously constrained.

As Israel disengages from Gaza and the northern West Bank, the possibility of Palestinian economic revival beckons. In this context the need for additional infrastructure and more efficient infrastructure services as well as for open international gateways becomes pressing. This assessment is intended to provide a basis for such developments.

Let me add that this work could not have been carried out without the full cooperation and contribution of a number of institutions of the Palestinian Authority, to whom we owe our thanks.

Nigel Roberts
Country Director

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Full report:


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