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Map of West Bank

DefinitionDefinition Field ListingField Listing Rank OrderRank Order
   Introduction    West Bank
Background:
Definition Field Listing
The Israel-PLO Declaration of Principles on Interim Self-Government Arrangements (the DOP), signed in Washington on 13 September 1993, provided for a transitional period not exceeding five years of Palestinian interim self-government in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. Under the DOP, Israel agreed to transfer certain powers and responsibilities to the Palestinian Authority, which includes the Palestinian Legislative Council elected in January 1996, as part of the interim self-governing arrangements in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. A transfer of powers and responsibilities for the Gaza Strip and Jericho took place pursuant to the Israel-PLO 4 May 1994 Cairo Agreement on the Gaza Strip and the Jericho Area and in additional areas of the West Bank pursuant to the Israel-PLO 28 September 1995 Interim Agreement, the Israel-PLO 15 January 1997 Protocol Concerning Redeployment in Hebron, the Israel-PLO 23 October 1998 Wye River Memorandum, and the 4 September 1999 Sharm el-Sheikh Agreement. The DOP provides that Israel will retain responsibility during the transitional period for external and internal security and for public order of settlements and Israeli citizens. Direct negotiations to determine the permanent status of Gaza and West Bank that began in September 1999 after a three-year hiatus, were derailed by a second intifadah that broke out in September 2000. The resulting widespread violence in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, Israel's military response, and instability within the Palestinian Authority continue to undermine progress toward a permanent agreement.

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   Geography    West Bank
Location:
Definition Field Listing
Middle East, west of Jordan
Geographic coordinates:
Definition Field Listing
32 00 N, 35 15 E
Map references:
Definition Field Listing
Middle East
Area:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 5,860 sq km
land: 5,640 sq km
water: 220 sq km
note: includes West Bank, Latrun Salient, and the northwest quarter of the Dead Sea, but excludes Mt. Scopus; East Jerusalem and Jerusalem No Man's Land are also included only as a means of depicting the entire area occupied by Israel in 1967
Area - comparative:
Definition Field Listing
slightly smaller than Delaware
Land boundaries:
Definition Field Listing
total: 404 km
border countries: Israel 307 km, Jordan 97 km
Coastline:
Definition Field Listing
0 km (landlocked)
Maritime claims:
Definition Field Listing
none (landlocked)
Climate:
Definition Field Listing
temperate; temperature and precipitation vary with altitude, warm to hot summers, cool to mild winters
Terrain:
Definition Field Listing
mostly rugged dissected upland, some vegetation in west, but barren in east
Elevation extremes:
Definition Field Listing
lowest point: Dead Sea -408 m
highest point: Tall Asur 1,022 m
Natural resources:
Definition Field Listing
arable land
Land use:
Definition Field Listing
arable land: 16.9%
permanent crops: 18.97%
other: 64.13% (2001)
Irrigated land:
Definition Field Listing
NA sq km
Natural hazards:
Definition Field Listing
droughts
Environment - current issues:
Definition Field Listing
adequacy of fresh water supply; sewage treatment
Geography - note:
Definition Field Listing
landlocked; highlands are main recharge area for Israel's coastal aquifers; there are 244 West Bank settlements and 29 East Jerusalem settlements in addition to at least 20 occupied outposts(August 2003 est.)

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   People    West Bank
Population:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
2,311,204
note: in addition, there are about 187,000 Israeli settlers in the West Bank and fewer than 177,000 in East Jerusalem (July 2004 est.)
Age structure:
Definition Field Listing
0-14 years: 43.8% (male 518,470; female 493,531)
15-64 years: 52.8% (male 623,785; female 595,376)
65 years and over: 3.5% (male 34,226; female 45,816) (2004 est.)
Median age:
Definition Field Listing
total: 18 years
male: 17.8 years
female: 18.2 years (2004 est.)
Population growth rate:
Definition Field Listing
3.21% (2004 est.)
Birth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
33.21 births/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Death rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
4.07 deaths/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Net migration rate:
Definition Field Listing
2.98 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Sex ratio:
Definition Field Listing
at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.75 male(s)/female
total population: 1.04 male(s)/female (2004 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 20.16 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 22.28 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 17.91 deaths/1,000 live births (2004 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total population: 72.88 years
male: 71.14 years
female: 74.72 years (2004 est.)
Total fertility rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
4.52 children born/woman (2004 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA
Nationality:
Definition Field Listing
noun: NA
adjective: NA
Ethnic groups:
Definition Field Listing
Palestinian Arab and other 83%, Jewish 17%
Religions:
Definition Field Listing
Muslim 75% (predominantly Sunni), Jewish 17%, Christian and other 8%
Languages:
Definition Field Listing
Arabic, Hebrew (spoken by Israeli settlers and many Palestinians), English (widely understood)
Literacy:
Definition Field Listing
definition: NA
total population: NA
male: NA
female: NA

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   Government    West Bank
Country name:
Definition Field Listing
conventional long form: none
conventional short form: West Bank

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   Economy    West Bank
Economy - overview:
Definition Field Listing
Real per capita GDP for the West Bank and Gaza Strip (WBGS) declined by about one-third between 1992 and 1996 due to the combined effect of falling aggregate incomes and rapid population growth. The downturn in economic activity was largely the result of Israeli closure policies - the imposition of border closures in response to security incidents in Israel - which disrupted labor and commodity market relationships between Israel and the WBGS. The most serious social effect of this downturn was rising unemployment, which in the WBGS during the 1980s was generally under 5%; by 1995 it had risen to over 20%. Israel's use of comprehensive closures during the next three years decreased and, in 1998, Israel implemented new policies to reduce the impact of closures and other security procedures on the movement of Palestinian goods and labor. These changes fueled an almost three-year-long economic recovery in the West Bank and Gaza Strip; real GDP grew by 5% in 1998 and 6% in 1999. Recovery was upended in the last quarter of 2000 with the outbreak of violence, which triggered tight Israeli closures of Palestinian self-rule areas and severely disrupted trade and labor movements. In 2001, and even more severely in 2002, Israeli military measures in Palestinian Authority areas resulted in the destruction of much capital plant and administrative structure, widespread business closures, and a sharp drop in GDP. Including Gaza Strip, the UN estimates that more than 100,000 Palestinians out of the 125,000 who used to work in Israel, in Israeli settlements, or in joint industrial zones have lost their jobs. In addition, about 80,000 Palestinian workers inside the Territories are losing their jobs. International aid of $2 billion in 2001-02 to the West Bank and Gaza Strip prevented the complete collapse of the economy.
GDP:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
purchasing power parity - $1.7 billion (2002 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
-22% (2002 est.)
GDP - per capita:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
purchasing power parity - $800 (2002 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
Definition Field Listing
agriculture: 9%
industry: 28%
services: 63%
note: includes Gaza Strip (1999 est.)
Population below poverty line:
Definition Field Listing
60% (2003 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
Definition Field Listing
lowest 10%: NA
highest 10%: NA
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
2.2% (includes Gaza Strip) (2001 est.)
Labor force:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA
Labor force - by occupation:
Definition Field Listing
agriculture 13%, industry 21%, services 66% (1996)
Unemployment rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
50% (includes Gaza Strip) (2002 est.)
Budget:
Definition Field Listing
revenues: $676.6 million
expenditures: $1.155 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (includes Gaza Strip) (2003 est.)
Agriculture - products:
Definition Field Listing
olives, citrus, vegetables; beef, dairy products
Industries:
Definition Field Listing
generally small family businesses that produce cement, textiles, soap, olive-wood carvings, and mother-of-pearl souvenirs; the Israelis have established some small-scale, modern industries in the settlements and industrial centers
Industrial production growth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA
Electricity - production:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA kWh; note - most electricity imported from Israel; East Jerusalem Electric Company buys and distributes electricity to Palestinians in East Jerusalem and its concession in the West Bank; the Israel Electric Company directly supplies electricity to most Jewish residents and military facilities; some Palestinian municipalities, such as Nablus and Janin, generate their own electricity from small power plants
Electricity - consumption:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA kWh
Electricity - imports:
Definition Field Listing
NA kWh
Exports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$603 million f.o.b., includes Gaza Strip
Exports - commodities:
Definition Field Listing
olives, fruit, vegetables, limestone
Exports - partners:
Definition Field Listing
Israel, Jordan, Gaza Strip (2000)
Imports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$1.9 billion c.i.f., includes Gaza Strip
Imports - commodities:
Definition Field Listing
food, consumer goods, construction materials
Imports - partners:
Definition Field Listing
Israel, Jordan, Gaza Strip (2000)
Debt - external:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$108 million (includes Gaza Strip) (1997 est.)
Economic aid - recipient:
Definition Field Listing
$2 billion (includes Gaza Strip) (2001-02 est.)
Currency:
Definition Field Listing
new Israeli shekel (ILS); Jordanian dinar (JOD)
Currency code:
Definition Field Listing
ILS; JOD
Exchange rates:
Definition Field Listing
new Israeli shekels per US dollar - 4.5541 (2003), 4.7378 (2002), 4.2057 (2001), 4.0773 (2000), 4.1397 (1999); Jordanian dinars per US dollar - fixed rate of 0.7090 (from 1996)
Fiscal year:
Definition Field Listing
calendar year (since 1 January 1992)

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   Communications    West Bank
Telephones - main lines in use:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
301,600 (total for West Bank and Gaza Strip) (2002)
Telephones - mobile cellular:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
480,000 (cellular subscribers in both West Bank and Gaza Strip) (2003)
Telephone system:
Definition Field Listing
general assessment: NA
domestic: NA
international: NA
note: Israeli company BEZEK and the Palestinian company PALTEL are responsible for communication services in the West Bank
Radio broadcast stations:
Definition Field Listing
AM 1, FM 0, shortwave 0
note: the Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation broadcasts from an AM station in Ramallah on 675 kHz; numerous local, private stations are reported to be in operation (2000)
Television broadcast stations:
Definition Field Listing
NA
Internet users:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
145,000 (includes Gaza Strip) (2003)

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   Transportation    West Bank
Highways:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 4,500 km
paved: 2,700 km
unpaved: 1,800 km
note: Israelis have developed many highways to service Jewish settlements (1997 est.)
Ports and harbors:
Definition Field Listing
none
Airports:
Definition Field Listing
3 (2003 est.)
Airports - with paved runways:
Definition Field Listing
total: 3
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
under 914 m: 1 (2003 est.)

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   Military    West Bank
Military expenditures - dollar figure:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA
Military expenditures - percent of GDP:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA

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   Transnational Issues    West Bank
Disputes - international:
Definition Field Listing
West Bank and Gaza Strip are Israeli-occupied with current status subject to the Israeli-Palestinian Interim Agreement - permanent status to be determined through further negotiation

Large portions of this information is from the US government open source publication "The World Factbook", other content copyright © Stratus-Pikpuk, Inc. You may use this information without permission for educational or other non-profit purposes if you refer to us as the source, contact us if you want to use this commercially.


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