UNDP Estimates Gaza Infrastructure Damage to be US$46 million in the Past Two Months

Palestinians inspect the rubble of a house demolished by Israeli soldiers in the Gaza City neighborhood of Shuja’iyyah, August 31, 2006. (MaanImages/Wesam Saleh)

JERUSALEM — The UNDP’s Programme of Assistance to the Palestinian People (PAPP) released the findings of an extensive damage assessment it conducted of the infrastructure in the Gaza Strip over the past two months. Covering the damage incurred since the beginning of the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) operation that began on 28 June to August 27, 2006, the assessment examined physical and material damage to six sectors: municipal infrastructure, housing, public buildings, agriculture, energy and industry.

The assessment was divided across 5 distinct geographic areas in the Gaza strip, namely the officially established Governorates: Gaza, Rafah, Khan Younis, Middle and North.

The team of over 25 UNDP engineers and programme specialist, who assessed every single damaged site in the Gaza Strip, estimated that the total cost of the damage for the period between June 28 and August 27, 2006 is around US$ 46 million.

Commenting on these initial findings, the acting Special Representative of UNDP/PAPP in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt.), Ms. Minna Tyrkko stated: “As a leading development agency in the oPt., with a long history of building essential infrastructure, we felt it necessary to take stock of the physical damage incurred by in the Gaza strip in the past two months” “We would not be able to begin the process of recovery if we did not empirically know the extent of the damage,” she added.

It is important to note that the figure of US$46 million reflects the actual estimated costs of damage and not estimates for the required repairs. Nor does this figure represent the total aggregated economic loss, which would be in the hundreds of millions.

Below is a breakdown of the estimates. For a full copy of the damage assessment report visit PAPP’s web site at: www.undp.ps

The initial damage estimates per sector hitherto yielded are:

1. Municipal infrastructure (including bridges water and wastewater lines and roads) US$ 8 million
2. Energy (including the electricity lines and power station) US$ 8 million
3. Agriculture (including olives and citrus orchards, greenhouses, poultries and livestock farms, water wells) US$ 23.5 million
4. Housing US$ 2 million
5. Public buildings (both governmental and NGO) US$ 4.2 million; and
6. Industry US$ 0.3 million

The damage estimates per Governorate are:

1. Gaza - US$ 13.5
2. Middle - US$12 million
3. Rafah - US$ 9.6 million
4. North - US$ 6.6 million
5. Khan Younis - US$ 4.2 millions

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