Other activities Better infrastructure in the water sector

The Middle East is one of the most water-poor regions in the world. The question of water supply is closely linked with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The distribution of water is a source of new conflict.

German Development Minister Gerd Müller and Palestinian Minister of Construction and Infrastructure Mufid Al-Hasayneh at the laying of the foundation stone for a sewage treatment plant in Gaza (1.12.2016)

German Development Minister Gerd Müller and Palestinian Minister of Construction and Infrastructure Mufid Al-Hasayneh at the laying of the foundation stone for a sewage treatment plant in Gaza (1.12.2016)

German Development Minister Gerd Müller and Palestinian Minister of Construction and Infrastructure Mufid Al-Hasayneh at the laying of the foundation stone for a sewage treatment plant in Gaza (1.12.2016)

In order to foster more efficient water use and safe wastewater disposal, Germany has assisted the Palestinian territories for more than two decades through the rehabilitation and new construction of water distribution networks, reservoirs and wastewater treatment plants. Some old projects are still being completed in the West Bank. New projects are only started in Gaza now, as needs there are particularly high.

Project example: Gaza central wastewater treatment plant

Central sewage treatment plant for Gaza City

Central sewage treatment plant for Gaza City

Central sewage treatment plant for Gaza City

The water supply situation in Gaza is particularly dramatic. The groundwater aquifer is being massively overexploited. As a result, sea water is leaking in, threatening to cause irreversible damage to the groundwater. Through its development cooperation, Germany wants to help secure water supplies for the people of Gaza.

The largest current project is the construction of a central wastewater treatment plant in Gaza City for a catchment area of about one million people. Notwithstanding the difficult situation in Gaza, the construction work, which began in December 2016, has advanced so far that it is now planned to start operation within 2020. This will make a major contribution towards reducing the pollution of groundwater and of the Mediterranean Sea.

Germany is also working with other donors on a major project for sea water desalination in the Gaza Strip.

Project example: Wastewater treatment plants in Nablus

The Nablus-West sewage treatment plant shortly before commissioning in July 2013

The Nablus-West sewage treatment plant shortly before commissioning in July 2013

The Nablus-West sewage treatment plant shortly before commissioning in July 2013

The city of Nablus is the main economic hub of the northern West Bank. Since 2005, the Nablus water supply networks for about 200,000 people have been improved with German support. This has particularly benefited the inhabitants of neighbourhoods in higher parts of Nablus, who are now receiving water on a regular basis again.

In parallel, efforts are under way to improve the wastewater system for about 250,000 people. Previously, the city's wastewater was collected and then discharged into local wadis untreated. This polluted the environment and the region's scarce groundwater resources, and it resulted in health hazards for the people.