TEAM EUROPE partners discussed today during a meeting with the Palestinian Prime Minister, Mohammed Shtayyeh, their combined support to Palestine in overcoming the impact of the COVID-19 crisis. This support addresses the vital short-term emergency and humanitarian needs while mitigating the economic and social impact for Palestinian women and men, households, and businesses in the longer term.
TEAM EUROPE’s package provides direct assistance to the key actions identified in the Palestinian Authority’s COVID-19 Response Plan, namely short-term emergency support This includes the UN-coordinated Inter-Agency COVID-19 Response Plan. TEAM EUROPE is, collectively, also a key donor to the multilateral response system as such, providing i.a. a third of the voluntary contributions to the UN budget. This translates into flexibility and action of UN agencies in Palestine. and longer-term structural support to the health system, fiscal and current expenditure support, as well as assistance to Palestinian businesses, citizens and refugees.
Through TEAM EUROPE’s response grants will be increased and advanced for a value of around EUR 270.2 million. Furthermore, financial instruments, dedicated investments, loans, and loan guarantees, worth EUR 103.3 million will be put at the disposal of private and financial sector entities. Overall, out of the total package of EUR 373.5 million new additional funds account for EUR 181.2 million (grants EUR 77.9 million, financial instruments EUR 103.3 million).
“TEAM EUROPE is doing all it takes to combat the coronavirus crisis. We want to show solidarity with the Palestinian people. By supporting peace, stability, human rights, and sustainable development in Palestine, we uphold our core values. The wellbeing of our partners across the globe matters to every European.” said the EU Representative Sven Kühn von Burgsdorff during the meeting. “By working together, TEAM EUROPE can muster a critical mass of assistance that few others can match. Europe’s strong partnerships around the world are thus even more relevant in tackling this pandemic and its economic and social consequences,” he added.
The European response also recognizes the vital contribution that UNRWA delivers to regional stability via its service provision to Palestine refugees. Thus, it will allow UNRWA to direct its budget allocations towards critical health emergencies and socio-economic needs in the context of their COVID-19 related Appeals.
TEAM EUROPE in Palestine is a coalition that includes the EU and its Member States, Norway, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the European Investment Bank (EIB).
TEAM EUROPE’s consolidated response is implemented in full consistency with the important ongoing work of European partners along the five pillars of the European Joint Strategy and the overarching objective of Palestinian state-building. It also includes a component to support the promotion and respect of human rights, particularly the human rights of women and girls, due to the rise in domestic household violence during the COVID-19 crisis.