Ramallah, 2 October 2018 – UN-Habitat and the Government of Palestine launched the new Habitat Country Programme Document for Palestine (HCPD) 2018-2022 as part of celebrations to mark World Habitat Day observed on the first Monday of October to draw global attention to UN-Habitat’s efforts to promote sustainable urban development policies and ensure adequate shelter for all. This year’s theme is Managing Municipal Solid Waste.

The UN-Habitat Country Programme Document for Palestine will help policy makers and urban planners to analyze, design and implement interventions in sustainable urbanization, spatial planning, local governance, and urban management that are responsive to the needs of the Palestinian people. The HCPD will be implemented through the Special Human Settlements Programme for the Palestinian People (SHSPPP) which recognizes the need to be nimble and innovative by promoting multilateral and bilateral partnerships with other UN entities and development partners. The SHSPPP has been instrumental in developing a coherent spatial planning system across Palestine.

A new city-region planning initiative for the three Governorates of Jerusalem, Ramallah and Al-Bireh, and Hebron will be prepared with support from UN-Habitat and a consortium of local academic and private planning firms.  Arabtech Jardaneh Engineers & Architects (AJP) and the International Peace and Cooperation Center (IPCC) will develop plans for Jerusalem, and Ramallah and Al-Bireh while plans for Hebron will be developed with the support of the National Center for Sustainable Development (NCD), House of Palestinian Expertise for Consultancies & Studies (HOPE) and An-Najah National University (NNU).

The HCPD was launched on 30 September 2018 at a ceremony hosted by the Ministry of Local Government (MoLG) and attended by the Minister for Local Government Mr. Hussein Al-A’raj, his deputy and the Governors of Jerusalem, Ramallah and Al-Bireh, and Hebron.  “We are committed to work with UN-Habitat in realizing the HCPD and more specifically the new city-region plans where fit-for-purpose strategies will be devised to foster resilience for the most vulnerable communities, especially in the Israeli occupied Area C of the West Bank,” said Mr. Al-A’raj.

UN-Habitat Head of Office in Palestine Mr. Zeyad Elshakra said the agency is happy to support realization of an overall spatial framework for Palestine as a vehicle for the localization of the New Urban Agenda within the context of the HCPD 2018-2022.

The European Union has provided financial assistance for this new planning initiative through the Fostering Tenure Security and Resilience of Palestinian Communities through Spatial-Economic Planning Interventions in Area C project implemented by UN-Habitat in Palestine between 2017 and 2020.

The Habitat Country Programme Document (2018-2022) for Palestine can be downloaded from here.