World Bank and UN: Property damage in Gaza estimated at $18.5 billion

Всемирный банк и ООН: материальный ущерб в Газе оценивается в 18,5 млрд долларов

Children in Gaza will experience the effects of war on their development and well-being throughout their lives. World Bank and UN: Property damage in Gaza estimated at $18.5 billion Peace and Security

Damage to critical infrastructure in Gaza is estimated at approximately $18.5 billion as of the end of January 2024. This is equivalent to 97 percent of the combined GDP of the West Bank and Gaza Strip in 2022. These data are provided by the authors of a new report prepared by the World Bank and the United Nations with financial support from the European Union.

Researchers used remote data collection sources to provide a preliminary analysis of damage and destruction of physical infrastructure in critical sectors between October 2023 and the end of January 2024. The final report expects the scale of damage, losses and needs to be significantly greater than the interim assessment.

Destruction in all sectors

Experts conclude that the damage affects all sectors of the economy. Residential buildings accounted for 72 percent of the damage, public service infrastructure such as water, health and education accounted for 19 percent, and commercial and industrial buildings nine percent. It is estimated that the war has already left behind 26 million tons of debris and rubble, which will take years to clear.

In addition, the report examines the impact of hostilities on power grids and generators, as well as the effects of a near-total blackout since the first week of the conflict.

With 92 percent of major roads destroyed or damaged and communications infrastructure also severely damaged, the delivery of humanitarian aid is extremely difficult, the researchers note.

Impact on population

The report also talks about the impact of the destruction on the population of Gaza. All residents of the sector are experiencing severe food shortages and malnutrition, and more than half of them are on the verge of starvation. 75 percent of the population has fled their homes, and more than a million people are still homeless.

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Mass famine in northern Gaza: Israel continues to restrict humanitarian aid

Catastrophic physical and mental health impacts hit women, children, the elderly and people with disabilities hardest. However, young children are expected to experience impacts on their development and well-being throughout their lives. Among other things, the education system in Gaza has collapsed and children are not learning.

The people of Gaza have only minimal access to health care, medicine and treatment. 84 percent of health facilities were damaged or destroyed, and the remaining hospitals were without electricity or water. The water supply and sewerage system is on the verge of collapse: it is operating at five percent of its previous capacity. In such conditions, people limit themselves in water consumption.

Recommendations for restoration

In addition to the interim damage assessment, experts provide recommendations for a speedy recovery in the sector. In particular, they propose to quickly increase the scale of humanitarian assistance, expand food production, provide temporary shelters for people, and restore basic services.


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