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Japan's Light Reaches to the Palestine
-Palestine: Completion Ceremony for the Project for Introduction of Clean Energy by Solar Electricity Generation System-

November 30, 2012

Dr. Salam Fayyad and Mr. Junya Matsuura

JICS being handed an armor at the ceremony by Dr. Salam Fayyad

Photovoltaic Module at the Site
(Photo: Mr. Issam Al-Rimawi)

Jericho -- the West Bank -- In the lowest city in the world and for the first time in the country regarding size and technology, photovoltaic modules have been installed to capture light from sun rays that hit the area almost all year around.

Funded by the Government of Japan and procured by JICS, the Project for Introduction of Clean Energy by Solar Electricity Generation System is a one of a kind project regarding size and capacity. It has been implemented in Jericho City for the benefit of the Palestinian Energy Authority.

"The opening of the Solar Electricity Generation System is considered a historical day in the energy sector of Palestine that is to be remembered." Minister of the Palestinian Energy Authority Dr. Omar Kittaneh said in the opening ceremony of the Project.

The ceremony was held in the Project's site in the Agro-Industrial Park of Jericho City, a station built on an area of approximately 13,000m2 and whose rating capacity is 300 kW which is capable to provide electricity to more than 130 homes. The station will be providing energy to investors' plants in the Agro-Industrial Park, a project also being implemented and funded by the Government of Japan.

Dr. Kittaneh pointed out that this project will decrease the stress on the only provider of electricity to the West Bank "Jerusalem Electricity Co." after it has been threatened by Israel to cut off the flow of current to the Palestinian Co. since the latter has not paid its 125 million Dollar dues to the main Israeli distributor of energy to the West Bank through the Jerusalem Electricity Co.

"It is important to develop the Palestinian self-capacities and provide the appropriate environment to attract and encourage investment in the country and most importantly in the Jordan Valley area which is suffering from ongoing Israeli settler attacks, in an attempt to deviate the people's will and thwart the development efforts." Palestinian Prime Minister Dr. Salam Fayyad said, thanking Japan for its support of the renewable energy and other indispensible projects it has funded in various sectors.

"This project is the seed for the Palestinian-Japanese cooperation," asserted the Japanese Ambassador for the Palestinian Affairs Mr. Junya Matsuura, "it is a fundamental project for the implementation of the regional initiative - Corridor for Peace and Prosperity - that has been designed for the contribution of developing the Palestinian economy."

This is only the beginning of the Palestinian plan to gradually become independent and decrease the reliance on the Israeli occupation by generating around 10% of the electricity produced locally from renewable energy resources until 25% of the total Palestinian energy consumption in the year 2020.

The station is now being run by Palestinian technicians and engineers who have been trained for the maintenance and management of the Project.

(By Ghada Qattawi, Project Coordinator, JICS Palestine Office)

Basic Information of This Project

Project Name The Project for Introduction of Clean Energy by Solar Electricity Generation System
Date of E/N December 21, 2009
Date of G/A December 21, 2009
Grant Amount ¥600 million
Date of A/A January 6, 2010
Agent Agreement with Palestinian Energy Authority
End-Users Palestinian Energy Authority
Project Profile The Supply of 300kW Solar Electricity Generating System with the operational training
JICS's Role Project management for the procurement of the services and the equipment necessary for the project and for the management of project funds.