Highlighted results

40,000 Palestinians gained access to justice services

640,000 Palestinians used safely managed drinking water services

1,900 young Gazans generated income through freelancing

Additional sources

Factsheet Multiannual Country Strategy Palestinean Territories

Factsheet on the efforts of The Netherlands from 2019 to 2022

Openaid.nl

Overview projects in the Palestinian Territories

Introduction

In the Palestinian Territories, the Netherlands’ overall objectives are to create a more enabling environment for conflict resolution and to realise a two-state solution in which an independent, democratic and viable Palestinian state is achieved with access to its own (natural) resources, alongside a secure, internationally recognised Israel.

The reporting period of 2018-2019 was again challenging for the Palestinian Territories with continuing flare-ups of violence in Gaza, the Palestinian Authority experiencing a fiscal crisis, which affected the purchasing power of the Palestinian population, further continuation of settlement expansion, lack of progress in achieving reconciliation between the Palestinian leadership in the West Bank and Gaza, and no viable prospects for peace.

Our activities focused on Security and Rule of Law (strengthening the countervailing power of civil society and Access to Justice), economic development (creating job opportunities for Palestinians in the IT sector and agriculture) and trade (finding practical solutions to remove barriers to trade, including lowering transaction costs for Palestinian businesses). Our efforts in the water sector focused on service delivery to marginalised and underserved communities and on waste water. In the field of food and nutrition security, our priority was to enable farmers to better cultivate their land and create stronger agro-businesses. Development co-operation in this challenging political context is not easy but the results achieved are mostly in line with our targets.

Results 2019

The Netherlands’ interventions have led to

more jobs in IT and agriculture

more opportunities for export and lower transaction costs for businesses

larger areas of land being used for agriculture

more farmers becoming proud owners of agri-businesses

more people gaining access to safe drinking water and the safe disposal of waste water

more people gaining access to justice and stronger civil society organisations holding the authorities to account

more Palestinians able to file complaints about human rights violations

more people-to-people contacts between Palestinians and Israelis

more people trained in negotiation skills

Five million Palestinians benefited from improved access via the Allenby/King Hussein Bridge – the only consistently available international gateway. With Dutch support, it became easier to transport construction materials into Gaza, leading to improved construction in Gaza.

Results by theme

Security and rule of Law Water Food security Private sector development

Featured project Palestinian Territories

Water Sector Regulatory Council

Worldwide experience has shown that regulation improves the overall performance of the water sector by increasing transparency, prominence and visibility, but also because it contributes to its financial sustainability. For these reasons, the Netherlands supports the Water Sector Regulatory Council (WSRC). Within the reporting period, the WSRC developed the waste-water performance monitoring index, including 22 indicators covering network, treatment and finances. After collecting, reviewing and assessing the data of 71 waste-water treatment plants, the WSRC was able to make tailored recommendations to improve not only operational performance but also to apply a tariff that is fair to Palestinian consumers to cover the operation and maintenance costs of the facilities. This was coupled with a governance and integrity survey to assess the level of citizen’s trust in waste-water service provision and the level of their participation in decision-making processes.

Water Sector Regulatory Council
Details about this project on OpenAid

Read more about the Water Sector Regulatory Council project on OpenAid

Security and rule of Law

The results in context

Despite the challenging political, legal and security context of the Palestinian Territories, the Netherlands’ efforts in the field of security and rule of law did lead to relevant results. Through the Sawasya programme, legal awareness among Palestinian citizens improved. An increasing number of people, especially women, gained access to justice and received legal aid. Capacity development combined with diplomatic efforts helped to achieve better co-ordination between justice institutions. However, the independence of the judiciary was under considerable pressure. The Netherlands’ support to civil society watchdogs therefore remained relevant and resulted in critical voices being heard at critical moments. In general, the partnership with human rights organisations helped to support and promote accountability and respect for human rights and international law.

Dutch support in the area of reconciliation helped to bring together several Israelis and Palestinians across the Green Line, in support of building a more conducive environment for peace building efforts. A number of mid-level influentials received high-quality training in negotiation. These interactions continue to be difficult, however, and highly sensitive in the current political climate. For insight into some of the stories behind the people involved in these projects, please visit People to People.

Water

The results in context

Dutch support created better water infrastructure, facilitated steps in water sector reform and increased the capacity of relevant players in the water field. Flow meters and waste-water collection systems installed with our support helped to measure and manage transboundary waste water in different locations in the West Bank. Palestinians who do not currently have access to basic water and energy services gained greater access to clean water through our contribution to large scale infrastructure in Gaza and green water and energy systems in the West Bank.

The Netherlands’ support reinforced the institutional and legal framework for the sector. Our technical support improved service delivery. See also our highlighted project concerning the Water Sector Regulatory Council. Community awareness raising and research created innovative, sector-specific knowledge, technologies and practices, increasing the efficient use of the limited water resources.

As Deputy Chair of the Water Sector Working Group, the Netherlands contributed to better alignment and harmonisation of support. Cross-sector reform, planning, co-ordination and implementation have been identified as gaps to be worked on further.

The Netherlands has successfully stimulated research collaboration. A joint collaborative research project between the Hebrew University and the Al Quds Public Health Society has resulted in better promotion of treated waste water for agricultural purposes. Data retrieved from two new test sample machines indicated potential for policy adjustment.

Food security

The results in context

The Netherlands helped Palestinian people to gain access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food; Palestinian farmers put their land to sustainable and economically viable use and agri-businesses have become more competitive. With Dutch support, plant diseases in the West Bank and Gaza were better controlled and prevented. Access to land and water are key issues in the Palestinian agricultural context, which suffers from both external and internal constraints, and this is therefore at the heart of Dutch food security policy in the Palestinian Territories.

With support from the Netherlands, 8,700 people have gained improved access to healthy and diverse food, and 2,865 hectares of farmland have been targeted by Netherlands-supported projects to be put to more sustainable use. Furthermore, the Netherlands has supported the development of multiple laws and policies related to food safety standards, strengthening opportunities for agricultural export as well as ensuring safe food for Palestinians.

Private sector development

The results in context

With support from the Netherlands, Gaza Sky Geeks, the first tech hub in Gaza, is making strong progress in reaching its goals and ambitions. Despite the severe day-to-day conditions that Gazan people face, Gaza Sky Geeks is able to offer its members skills and practical tools to help them find both short-term and long-term employment. Gaza Sky Geeks trains people in IT skills that the employment market demands in both the Palestinian Territories and abroad. Through its Digital Agency, young men and women are connected to clients within and outside the Palestinian Territories. In a context in which movement of people is problematic, enabling young Gazans to be part of global economic activities has strong added value. Put in numbers, this means that Dutch support over the reporting period has helped 44 graduates of the Coding Academy to generate a cumulative income of US$ 96,107. In addition, more than 300 people were trained through the Freelance Academy and these have generated a total cumulative income of more than US$ 719,000. The Gaza Sky Geeks Geexelerator programme supported 10 start-ups, which generated US$ 12,000 in cumulative revenue, and six of these start-ups raised US$ 220,000 in funds.

The Netherlands also made progress in removing obstacles to trade and the movement of goods and people across borders, thus stimulating economic development. With support from the Netherlands, the Gaza Reconstruction Mechanism (GRM) has increased access to construction materials in Gaza, enabling economic activity, especially in the housing sector. Furthermore, with Dutch support to the Office of the Quartet, the movement of people via the Allenby/King Hussein Bridge has dramatically improved. Increased opening hours at this main (and for many only) international gateway has benefited Palestinians across the board.

Background and future Palestinian Territories

Glimpse into the future

The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic is most likely severe. The extent to which this affects our current and future projects is still unknown.

Additional sources

You can find how the budget was allocated in 2019 and which projects were funded on the budget website.

  1. Visit the website
    Programme budget Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation
  2. Select financial year 2019
Representative Office Website

Visit the Netherlands’ Representative Office website

Facebook page

Follow the Netherlands’ Representative Office on Facebook

Results Security and rule of Law

Download PDF with results for Security and rule of Law in Palestinian Territories

Results Water

Download PDF with results for Water in Palestinian Territories

Results Food security

Download PDF with results for Food security in Palestinian Territories

Results Private sector development

Download PDF with results for Private sector development in Palestinian Territories

Expenditure Embassy by channel

Metric

Expenditure Embassy by theme

Metric

The budget in this figure is for the year 2019 and does not completely correspond with the results on this page, which have been collected between Oct 2018 and Oct 2019. More information on this can be found on the 'About the results report' page.