West Bank and Gaza - Country Commercial Guide
Energy

This is a best prospect industry sector for this country. Includes a market overview and trade data.

Last published date: 2019-10-13

Overview

Investment in the energy sector in the West Bank and Gaza is one of the requisites for economic growth and development. The electricity system requires substantial upgrading and expansion to meet current demand.  Insufficient power supply is a serious impediment to Palestinian economic growth. Over the next few years, infrastructure development, including upgrading the electricity network and establishing two gas-fired power plants in Jenin and Tarqumyia in the West Bank, could be an area for growth if capital for this investment becomes available.

The total supply of electricity in the West Bank is estimated at 850 MW. Currently, around 65 MW is generated from renewable energy sources, Jordan supplies 35 MW, and Israel supplies the remaining 750 MW.  Five electricity distribution companies operate in the West Bank: the Jerusalem District Electricity Company (JDECO), which serves Jerusalem, Jericho, Ramallah and Bethlehem; the North Electricity Distribution Company (NEDCO) and Toubas Electricity Distribution Company (TEDCO), which serve the northern parts of the West Bank; and the Hebron Electric Power Company (HEPCO) and the Southern Electric Company (SELCO), which serve the southern parts of the West Bank. The Palestinian Authority (PA) has recently established the Palestinian Electricity Transmission Company (PETL), which is the single buyer of electricity from the Palestine Power Generation Company (PPGC), Israel, and other neighboring countries.    

In Gaza, the Palestine Electric Company (PEC), under its Gaza Power Generating Company (GPGC), operates a power station, the Gaza Power Plant, which currently operates at partial capacity only due to reliance on less efficicient diesel fuel (versus natural gas) and limited funds for the purchase of diesel fuel. The full capacity of GPGC is 140 MW. The total demand for electricity in Gaza is roughly 450 MW. Egyptian power lines have been inoperational for several years. As a result, daily electricity cuts affect water, sanitation, education, agriculture, telecommunications as well as healthcare services.   

Leading Sub-Sectors

· Renewable Energy

· Electricity Infrastructure

Opportunities

The sector offers opportunities for U.S. companies that specialize in major network equipment, power generation and transmission, diesel generators, and solar equipment and solutions.  Over the next few years, infrastructure development, including upgrading of the electricity network will be a major growth sector. Another opportunity exists for establishing one or two gas-fired power plants in the West Bank and converting the diesel-based Gaza Power Plant to operate on gas.

The Palestinian government encourages the development of renewables as alternative sources of energy.  Accordingly, the Palestinian Energy Strategy is to generate 50% of power locally from gas-fired power plants, import 40% from neighboring countries, and generate 10% from renewable energy sources.  By 2026, the plan states that 200 MW of electricity will be generated from solar energy (utility-scale solar PV farms and rooftop solar PV panels). At the same time, the Palestine Power Generation Company continues to plan for the establishment of one to two combined-cycle power plants in the West Bank with a total capacity of up to 250 MW each on a Build Own and Operate (BOO) basis.  Implementation of the first phase will involve a pilot project at a total cost of $150 million in the North of the West Bank, which is expected to start in mid-2021.  The two power plants will cover 50% of the demand for electricity in the West Bank.  Construction has yet to begin. 

More than a decade ago, natural gas was discovered off the shore of Gaza. British Gas and Shell held the license to explore the gas fields, but off-and-on negotiations with private gas developers and Israel have not yielded a supply agreement.  If an agreement is reached and the infrastructure to transport the gas is developed, the power plants in Gaza and the West Bank could consume an estimated 1.1 BCM/pa.

Resources

Palestine Electricity Transmission Co. Ltd.

Palestine Power Generation Co.

Jerusalem District Electricity Co

Hebron Electric Power Co.

Southern Electricity Co.

Northern Electricity Distribution Co.

Palestine Electric Co.

Gaza Electricity Distribution Co.

For further information, please contact:

Assad Barsoum, Senior Commercial Specialist, Assad.Barsoum@trade.gov or +972-2-625-4742.