In January, 4106 truckloads of goods entered the Gaza Strip and 111 truckloads of Gaza-grown strawberries and carnations passed through the Israeli crossings on their way  to European markets.

 Humanitarian & Civilian Activities in Gaza Strip-COGAT monthly report January 2011


Picking flowers for export (Photo: Reuters)

The following is a report on the civilian and humanitarian activities carried out by the Israeli authorities during the month of January 2011:

 Expanding the Civil Policy towards the Gaza Strip

In accordance with the Cabinet’s decision to liberalize the civilian policy vis-à-vis the Gaza Strip, Israel has implemented the following measures:

  • The capacity of the Kerem Shalom crossing was increased by 170%, enabling 250 truckloads to enter the Gaza Strip via Kerem Shalom on a daily basis.
  • The list of controlled items to the Gaza Strip was published on July 5th. The list can be found on the website of the Prime Minister’s Office .
  • Promoting the implementation of international projects – overall, 101 projects of international organizations were approved and 19 of them already completed.
  • A joint COGAT-PA team was established in order to promote internationally funded and supervised projects.
  • A joint team comprising COGAT, the MOD Crossing Authority and the PA was established in order to increase the capacity of the existing operational crossings. 
  • The export of agriculture products (flowers, strawberries and bell peppers) to European markets was approved.

Main Points

  •   The export of strawberries, flowers and bell peppers from the Gaza Strip to the European market continued, with a 33.33% increase in volume. 
  •   There was a decrease of 10% in the volume of imports by the private sector in comparison with last month. 
  •   There was an increase of 31.69% in the volume of imports by international organizations. 
  •   There was an increase of 8% in the number of patients and companions entering Israel for medical reasons. 
  •   There was a 38% decrease in the number of trucks entering Gaza for projects compared to last month.
  •   There was 2% increase in the amount of private vehicles imported into the Gaza Strip. 
  •   The PA stopped ordering heavy diesel fuel for the power plant in the second week of the month; since then no fuel for the power plant has been imported from Israel.    

Palestinian Movement and Permits

  3,103 Palestinians exited the Gaza Strip through Erez Crossing.
  Overall, 3,139 permits were issued to Palestinians, allowing them to cross through Erez, including:

  • 1,482 permits for medical cases (743 patients and 739 accompanying individuals), enabling them to receive medical treatment in Israel, the West Bank and abroad;
  • 20 permits for embassy visa interviews;
  • 46 permits for the attendance of conventions and professional medical seminars;
  • 63 permits for traveling abroad;
  • 38 permits for business meetings.
  • 8 scholarship students exited for academic studies abroad.
  • 4 Palestinians with foreign citizenship exited to go abroad.
  • 1,234 businessmen exited the Gaza Strip.

Exports from the Gaza Strip
  In January 163.282 tons of strawberries, 2,693,430 carnations and 5.05 tons of bell peppers were exported.

  Since the beginning of the season (28 November 2010) 315.27 tons of strawberries, 3,064,638 carnations and 6 tons of bell peppers were exported to European markets.

International Community Activity

  •  On 20 January 2011, an annual meeting was held in Erez CLA for the International organizations operating in the Gaza Strip. Representatives from 46 organizations participated in the meeting.
  • 49 diplomatic delegations entered the Gaza Strip. 
  • 85 international organization staff members exited the Gaza Strip. 
  • 85 Palestinian international organization staff members exited the Gaza Strip.
  •  21 donation requests were approved. 
  • $13.5 million were transferred to the Gaza Strip for the payment of UNRWA employees’ salaries.
  •  214 truckloads were coordinated by the International community (including 30 computers).

Project Implementation Status

  The transfer of equipment for approved projects in the Gaza Strip has continued, in coordination with international organizations – a total of 301 truckloads has been transferred.

  Status of the Projects – One project was completed this month, 10 projects are being implemented, and 23 approved projects are awaiting implementation.

  Details of projects being implemented:
The Northern Water Treatment Plant – Part B (World Bank) – 239 truckloads of aggregates (8,738 tons) iron (102 tons) and other equipment were delivered this month.
Riad School in Rafah (UNRWA) – 10 truckloads of iron (40 tons) and cement (320 tons) were delivered this month.
Establishment of a school in Nuseirat (UNRWA) – 15 truckloads of aggregates and iron were delivered this month.
Establishment of a school in Fuhari (UNRWA) – One truckload of aggregates (40 tons) was delivered this month.
Establishment of a school in Ma’an (UNRWA)- 2 truckloads of aggregates (80 tons) were delivered this month.
Construction of 8 housing units in Rafah (UNRWA) – One truckload was delivered this month.
400 Greenhouses (USAID) – 14 truckloads were delivered this month.
Reconstruction of a medical center in Jabalia (UNRWA)- 13 truckloads of cement (120 tons), iron (80 tons) and aggregates (430 tons) were delivered this month.
Creating work places (USAID) – One truckload of equipment was delivered.
Improving the electric network (UNDP) – 5 truckloads of cement (200 tons) were delivered.  

Humanitarian Infrastructure

  Israel maintained a continuous supply of electricity and water to the Gaza Strip.
  The transfer of fuel continued throughout the month, in accordance with the PA’s requests:

  • 87% decrease in the amount of heavy-duty diesel transferred to the Gaza Strip power plant.
  • 50% increase in the amount of cooking gas imported into the Gaza Strip.
  • 101% increase in the amount of gasoline transferred to UNRWA. 
  • 40% decrease in the amount of transportation diesel transferred to UNRWA.  

Maintenance equipment was transferred for the electricity network, in accordance with the PA’s requests:

  • One truckload of equipment was delivered for the Gaza Strip Energy Authority.
  • One truckload of communication equipment was delivered for Paltal Communication Company.

Crossing Activity

  •  During the month 2,995 truckloads (57,863 tons) were delivered to the Gaza Strip though Kerem Shalom crossing.
  • During the month 1,111 truckloads (43,570 tons) were delivered into the Gaza Strip though Karni Conveyor
  •  Overall, 4,106 truckloads (101,443 tons) entered the Gaza Strip, including:
    o 54 truckloads of clothing & footwear.
    o 150 truckloads of electric products
    o 1,670 truckloads of food
    o 45 truckloads of textiles
    o 414 truckloads of construction materials
    o 183 vehicles
    o 111 truckloads of inputs for agriculture

Fuel Transfers in January
Transportation Diesel (UNRWA)  – – –                         251,795
Heavy-duty diesel for the power station (liters) – – – – 719,967
Gasoline (UNRWA)   – – –                                                39,400 
Cooking Gas (tons) – – –                                                    3,035

Merchandise Truckloads
Flowers             27
Bell Peppers       1
Strawberries      84

Goods Delivered to the Gaza Strip by category
Product                   Truckloads
Food Products 
     Milk powder & baby formula 15
     Rice     69
     Wheat     424
     Produce (Fruits and Vegetables)     263
     Meat / Chicken / Fish Products     143
     Dairy Products     89
     Sugar     31
     Legumes     27
     Flour      70
     Cooking Oil     52
     Salt     9
     Mixed/Additional Food Products     478
    Total of Food Products     1,670
Glass, Wood Profiles and Aluminum Profiles 136
Cement 19
Aggregates 253
Iron 6
Total of Construction Materials     414
Inputs for Agriculture 111
Electric Products 150
Clothing & Footwear 54
Animal Feed 470
Hygiene Products 154
Transportation  44
Textile 45
Plumbing and Ceramics  305
Essential Humanitarian Products 511
Medicine and Medical Equipment 37
Mixed Products 141
Total Truckloads      4,106
Total Weight          101,433