British Government’s Current Position: Unemployment in Gaza

Q Asked by Baroness Tonge (Independent) on 14 January 2019

Department for International Development: Gaza: Young People: HL12814

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the World Bank’s findings in October 2018 that there is 70 per cent youth unemployment in Gaza; and what discussions they have had with the government of Israel about what action can be taken to support young people who live there into employment.

A Answered by: Lord Bates 28 January 2019

The UK remains gravely concerned about the economic and humanitarian situation in Gaza. 54 per cent of the total population is estimated to be unemployed, including over 70 per cent of young people. Until the blockade of Gaza is eased and its economy allowed to grow unemployment will continue to rise.

HMG officials regularly propose measures to improve the situation in Gaza with Government of Israel officials. These include the adoption of a more transparent process for allowing goods into Gaza and permitting greater exports from the strip. The UK is supporting direct measures to support job creation in Gaza. We will more than double the amount of UK aid spent on economic development in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPTs) to around £38 million over the next five years (2018-2023). This will include support to addressing the water and electricity crisis in Gaza and seek to address movement and access restrictions. The Chevening Scholarship Programme, funded by the UK government, brings talented young people from Gaza to study in the UK, helping to provide educative opportunities and develop employment skills.

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