New cooperation programme
The Belgian Development Cooperation has concluded a new cooperation programme for the 2012-2015 period with the Palestinian National Authority. Over the course of the next 4 years, 71.6 million euros will go primarily to education and local authorities. In this way, Belgium ensures the continuity of its previous development efforts in the Palestinian Territory.
In 2008, Belgium signed a cooperation programme worth 50 million euros with the Palestinian National Authority. The emphasis there was on education and local authorities. On 23 November 2011, a new four-year cooperation agreement worth 71.6 million euros was signed during the Joint Commission in Ramallah. The new programme therefore contains over 20 million euros (40%) more than the previous, and assures continuity through continued presence in the same two concentration sectors: education and local authorities.
Education and local authorities
Several projects will be implemented by the Palestinian partner with the Belgian Technical Cooperation (BTC) in priority sectors such as education and local government.
Belgium supports the education sector for 33 million euros. This amount is used in a portfolio approach:
- Infrastructure projects such as the construction of schools in the West Bank and in Zone C.
- Projects of soft skill that should improve the quality of education, such as e-Learning and in the area of Technical and Vocational Education and Training.
- Support the implementation of the "Strategic Plan for the Development of Education" of the Palestinian Ministry of Education as a basketfunding / budget support and a Joint Financing Arrangement.
The 20 million euros allocated to the local government should allow local Palestinian authorities to ensure the implementation of their own development policy with the Municipal Development Program. This plan should lead to the recovery of the local economy. We also work in this sector in the regeneration of historic rural centers.
The 2012-2015 Indicative Cooperation Programme also contains four interventions in a delegated cooperation scheme (14 million euros): 9 million euros in aid for the fight against poverty through the PEGASE funding from the European Commission, contributions to the sewage treatment in Gaza via the World Bank, an environmental and climate adaptation project from UNDP, and a relative intervention on lan planning by UN Habitat in East Jerusalem.
Like the EU, Belgium considers it important to be present in all parts of Palestine, and therefore also in Area C, the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip.
Besides bilateral cooperation with the Palestinian Authority through the Indicative Cooperation Programme, Belgium also provides substantial financial assistance to the Palestinian region through UNRWA (the UN agency for Palestinian refugees in the region), humanitarian aid actions and NGOs.
In 2012, the Belgian humanitarian aid to the Palestinian region amounted to more than 8 million, most of which was paid in the form of food aid.
- Indicative Cooperation Programme 2012-2015 (PDF, 1.17 MB)
- Belgian Official Development Assistance (ODA)