Washington, April 26, 2012 -- Secure property rights and functioning land markets are key underpinnings to economic growth and stability. To support the strengthening of land administration in the West Bank, the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors today approved a US$3 million grant which will fund ongoing efforts by the Palestinian Authority to register land.
The Second Land Administration project will do a systematic land registration of 180,000 dunums of land in the Dura area in the southern West Bank. The project is co-financed by the Government of Finland through a World Bank administered Trust Fund for a total project cost of US$ 8.7 million. It also supports the institutional strengthening of the Palestinian Land Authority with the technology and service standards to modernize land administration systems and service standards.
“Sound land administration is indispensable for social and economic development,” said Soraya Goga, Senior Urban Specialist at the World Bank. “Secure registration systems are essential for land tenure security and property rights. The involvement of the community in the project and the participatory dispute resolution process will also help women and other vulnerable groups by ensuring transparency in the identification of property ownership and final registration.”
The Palestinian Authority emphasized land registration as a priority in its Palestinian National Development Plan (2011- 2013) committing to complete the process and upgrade land management capacity. The Palestinian Land Authority has already achieved systematic registration in some municipal areas in the Bethlehem Governorate
“Formalization is more than just the mapping and registration of land rights,” said Mariam Sherman, World Bank Country Director for West Bank and Gaza. “There are economic considerations to a well functioning land management system, including incentives for investment, greater security in land markets and facilitation of improved credit markets through better collateral options. What this can add up to is greater opportunities for entrepreneurial Palestinians.”