Palestinian National Authority

Ending the Occupation, Establishing the State

Program of the Thirteenth Government

August 2009

Table of Contents



Our Vision of the State of Palestine

Foundational Principles

National Goals

Institutional Development

Sector Priorities, Policies and Programs:


Infrastructure development is not an end in itself; it is a means to bring about social and economic development. Public infrastructure is a means to deliver basic services to citizens and businesses domestically, and to connect us with the rest of the world. Public infrastructure in Palestine currently varies from one area to another due to population distribution and limited financial resources on one hand, and the actions of the Israeli occupation regime on the other. To develop the infrastructure in Palestine to promote social and economic development, the Government has defined policy priorities in six domains.

Develop infrastructure in rural and marginalized areas: In the 21st century, the lack of water, electricity networks, and roads in certain marginalized Palestinian communities is almost beyond belief. The Government will strive to build infrastructure in the in rural and marginalized areas, thereby advancing social justice, equitable distribution of resources and citizens’ steadfastness on their homeland.

Develop and maintain existing infrastructure: Existing infrastructure does not meet citizens’ needs. This is partially due to the lack of infrastructure maintenance. The Government will promote the importance of infrastructure maintenance and provide the necessary budgetary allocations, thereby prolonging the life of public infrastructure. The Government will also continue to implement projects for the development and rehabilitation of infrastructure throughout the Palestinian territory. The Government will give priority to the most underdeveloped areas, taking into account population levels in order respond to needs of the natural growth.

Develop large infrastructure projects: Israel seizes control of water resources and land in Area C, which consists of vast, uninhabited areas located outside the major population centers. These areas are natural locations for large infrastructure projects, such as wastewater treatment plants, landfills, water pipelines, and main roads. However, Israel has prevented the PNA from developing many essential projects. Consequently, several donor-funded projects are indefinitely suspended. The Government will work with the international community to apply pressure on Israel to bring an end to these obstructive practices.

Develop regional infrastructure: Development of regional infrastructure, such as the Arab Electricity Network, will enhance competition and hence service delivery to Palestinian consumers. Regional infrastructure will promote competitiveness of the national economy through modern transportation networks that are interconnected regionally and internationally. Therefore, the Government will work with regional and international partners to develop the regional infrastructure in Palestine.

Ensure local participation in developing infrastructure: In order to increase the social value of infrastructure projects, the Government will develop techniques to maximize the utilization of the domestic labour force and local products in infrastructure construction.

Improve local implementation capacity: Limited domestic capacity, stunted by a multiplicity of Israeli measures, has left the national construction sector without essential human capital and equipment needed to implement large-scale infrastructure projects. The Government has adopted a two-pronged approach to increase infrastructure project implementation capacity. In the near term, in light of the urgent need to reconstruct the Gaza Strip, and in view of massive destruction caused by the Israeli offensive, the Government will favor Arab construction businesses. In the medium term, the Government will assist domestic construction businesses by providing programs to develop the capacity of local manpower and providing financial support to procure capital equipment.

Objectives and activities of sector institutions

Below is a summary of the key objectives and related activities of the main governmental bodies in the sector.

Ministry of Transport

The Ministry of Transport (MoT) has the following objectives:

Ensure smooth and safe movement of persons and goods through:
• Developing plans and standards to improve local, main and interconnecting roads and railways and expanding their scope to cover all residential areas, including remote and marginalized areas.
• Developing plans to establish a safe passage to connect northern and southern governorates (the West Bank and Gaza).
• Taking part in the development of legislation and plans for building modern seaports, crossing points, and airports, including construction of the Palestine International Airport in the Jordan Valley and resumption of control over the Qalandiya Airport.
• Preparing for reconstruction of the Yasser Arafat International Airport and Gaza Port, as well as rehabilitating and developing the fishing harbour.
• Providing support to and reorganizing the Palestinian airlines.
• Developing the public transportation sector.
• Developing traffic safety standards, including standards associated with the design of roads, management of traffic and certification of vehicles.
• Developing mechanisms to involve the private sector in the development and management of a cost-effective transportation infrastructure.

Promote effective and transparent public service delivery through:
• Developing laws and regulations governing the transportation sector.
• Developing modern, automated working methods.
• Building a modern information management system.
• Building a metrological information system.
• Developing and implementing a system to properly manage and regulate the public transportation sector.
• Building the capacity of staff.

Ministry of Public Works and Housing

The Ministry of Public Works and Housing (MoPWH) has the following objectives:

Reconstruct Gaza, including rehabilitation of crossing points and reconstruction of houses, public and private buildings and infrastructure destroyed by the occupation regime.

Deliver appropriate services to citizens and governmental bodies through:
• Rehabilitating the existing road network and constructing new roads.
• Building a geographical information system that includes data on all roads and development projects.
• Developing necessary plans to integrate settlement infrastructure into the Palestinian infrastructure in light of the settlement evacuation experience in Gaza in 2005.
• Identifying strategies for reducing construction costs, working in cooperation with the Engineers Syndicate and other relevant partners.
• Developing strategies to promote the use of solar power through the construction industry. Contribute to rationalising government expenditure on roads and buildings through:
• Establishing regular maintenance units throughout Palestinian governorates.
• Constructing public buildings throughout governorates, replacing old rented buildings with modern ones, and providing building complexes for the civil and security sectors
• Complete the construction of ministries complex in Ramallah, pending the relocation of the Government to Jerusalem. Increase home ownership through:
• Developing affordable housing policies and programs for low and medium income households.
• Developing programs to provide long-term home loans.
• Deliver basic infrastructure for private and public housing projects, including those constructed by cooperative housing societies.
• Assisting residents of Jerusalem and areas adjacent to the Separation Wall to obtain appropriate housing and support their efforts to procure construction licences.

Enhance the performance of the MoPWH through:
• Building the capacity of staff.
• Introducing information management, geographical information and electronic archiving systems, and establishing systems interconnectivity between governorates and the MoPWH.

Palestinian Energy and Natural Resources Authority

The Palestinian Energy and Natural Resources Authority has the following objectives:

Ensure that the electricity supply is delivered to citizens through:
• Developing and rehabilitating internal electricity networks and main electricity lines.
• Completing the Rural Electricity Project to provide electricity to all citizens, with particular focus on locales affected by the Separation Wall and other marginalized and remote areas.
• Rehabilitating the Gaza electricity generation station.

Reduce the cost of electricity consumption through:
• Setting plans for interconnectivity with Arab regional electricity and gas networks, and for procuring petroleum.
• Continuing work towards effective exploitation of the gas field off the Gaza coastline and using natural gas to generate electricity.
• Developing alternative energy sources, including renewable energy.
• Improving the financial performance of the electricity sector by applying the Electricity Law, incorporating distribution companies, reducing net lending, and curbing illegal consumption.

Palestinian Water Authority

The Palestinian Water Authority (PWA) has the following objectives:

Protect Palestinian water sources through:
• Ensuring that all Palestinian water rights are secured.
• Developing regional cooperation in the management of water resources.
• Developing effective water management methods.
• Developing legislation to protect and preserve water resources.

Ensure that water-related services are delivered to all residential locales in Palestine through:
• Developing main water networks and pipelines, and digging new wells.
• Developing and implementing a program for the maintenance of wells and water networks on a regular and emergency basis.
• Concentrating on supplying water to rural areas, remote and marginalized areas, and areas affected by the Separation Wall.
• Devising plans and studies for constructing water purification plants in the Gaza Strip.

Reduce water consumption through:
• Rehabilitating the main water networks and pipelines in order to reduce water losses.
• Eliminating illegal consumption of water and reducing net lending.
• Establishing the National Water Undertaking to supply water on a wholesale basis and restructuring the water distribution sector, creating water and wastewater service boards pending the creation of Regional Water Undertakings.
• Ensure that wastewater services are delivered to all communities.
• Developing sewerage networks, main pipelines and wastewater treatment plants.
• Developing and implementing regular and emergency programs to maintain main water networks and pipelines as well as purification plants.
• Improving management of treated wastewater and developing techniques for disposal of waste residue.
• Developing low-cost water purification stations and mechanisms to treat wastewater in rural and small communities.

Palestinian Environment Quality Authority

The Palestinian Environment Quality Authority has the following objectives:

Provide protection to citizens against environmental pollution through:
• Developing environment-related laws, regulations and standards.
• Raise public awareness on environmental issues.
• Contribute to protecting public health by developing policies and programs for solid waste collection and disposal.

Conserve environmental diversity and protect the marine and coastal environment through:
• Developing policies, standards, programs and systems to protect environmental diversity.
• Developing policies, standards, programs and systems to protect the marine and coastal environment.

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