Priority area Sustainable economic development, training and employment promotion Creating opportunities
Some 65 per cent of the people in the Palestinian territories are under 30 years of age. Every year, more than 50,000 school leavers are added to the labour market.
The Palestinian territories are heavily dependent on Israel's economy. 90 per cent of all processed goods come from Israel, and 180,000 Palestinians from the West Bank make a living by working in Israel. Moreover, Palestinians living in other countries who regularly send remittances home play a significant economic and social role for the Palestinian territories.
Efforts to develop the vocational training sector
Among the Palestinian public, great importance is attached to education and training and to equal access to education for boys and girls. By regional comparison, the level of education is high. The Palestinian Authority wants to work towards better acceptance of vocational training among the people and more demand for such training, alongside higher education, which is in high demand. The Palestinian private sector is primarily characterised by family-owned businesses and small companies with just a few employees. These businesses need skilled workers.
The German Development Ministry (BMZ) is engaged in a broad range of activities in the Palestinian territories:
- Support for training to give people a basis for future employment and economically successful adult life
- Support for temporary employment through labour-intensive infrastructure development
- Development of a vocational education system that takes account of private companies' needs as future workers are trained
- Introduction of vocational education elements in higher education
- Job placement services
- Building people's capacity to start their own business
- Efforts to strengthen promising niches in the private sector, such as tourism, IT services, and food processing
- Improvement of the business environment through the development of deposit insurance and a credit guarantee fund in order to protect bank loans for business start-ups, for example
- Improvement of financial literacy among the people and assistance for the authorities in lending transactions
Project example: Dual study programmes at Al-Quds University
One signature project in the programme of Palestinian-German cooperation is the establishment of "dual" (school-based and industry-based) study programmes at Al-Quds University in East Jerusalem for electrical engineering, information technology, business administration, and industrial engineering and management. In order to support the development of the dual programmes, the BMZ has been providing advice and equipment to the relevant University departments and assisting with the development of a teaching strategy. The BMZ also supports the University's cooperation with 220 companies that provide in-house training. In February 2020, the first 29 graduates of the electrical engineering and information technology programmes received their diplomas.