U.S.-Palestinian Energy Dialogue Expands Palestinian Access to Energy as a Step to Peace

JERUSALEM – The United States and the Palestinian Authority launched the first U.S.-Palestinian Energy Dialogue yesterday in Ramallah.  As U.S. President Trump has made clear, meaningful economic growth in the West Bank and Gaza Strip is essential to enhancing the prospects for a just and lasting peace.  The U.S.-Palestinian Energy Dialogue focuses on improving the Palestinian people’s access to reliable energy – a critical element for business growth and job creation.

As an outcome of the Dialogue, the United States government and Palestinian Authority agreed to develop a twelve-month action plan of tangible steps to improve Palestinian access to energy.  Moreover, the two sides approved several immediate actions, including technical assistance to key Palestinian energy institutions.  This assistance will support the design and implementation of energy projects for Palestinians.  The two governments also agreed to work to advance the Electricity Agreement with Israel to expand Palestinian control over and access to critical energy resources and infrastructure.

At the opening of the Dialogue, U.S. Consul General Donald Blome said, “We are committed to seeing tangible steps to provide economic opportunities to Palestinians and major investments to the Palestinian economy.  Today’s Dialogue focuses on energy as one of the most critical elements to power the Palestinian economy of the future.”  The Department of State’s Bureau of Energy Resources co-chairs the Dialogue with the Palestinian Authority’s Energy and Natural Resources Authority.

Beyond the shared projects agreed to in the Dialogue, in the last year, the U.S. government has committed $13.5 million in assistance to the Palestinian energy sector.