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Countries > West Bank

Languages   3 languages are spoken in West Bank. We have 3760 products available for those languages.

Capital: Status - Israel/Palestinian
Population: 1,795,683
West Bank Map


Current issues: The Israel-PLO Declaration of Principles on Interim Self-Government Arrangements ("the DOP"), signed in Washington on 13 September 1993, provides for a transitional period not exceeding five years of Palestinian interim self-government in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. Permanent status negotiations began on 5 May 1996. Under the DOP, Israel agreed to transfer certain powers and responsibilities to the Palestinian Authority, which includes a Palestinian Legislative Council elected in January 1996, as part of interim self-governing arrangements in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. A transfer of powers and responsibilities for the Gaza Strip and Jericho has taken 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 DOP provides that Israel will retain responsibility during the transitional period for external security and for internal security and public order of settlements and Israelis. Permanent status is to be determined through direct negotiations which began on 5 May 1996.


Location: Middle East, west of Jordan

Geographic coordinates: 32 00 N, 35 15 E

Map references: Middle East

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: slightly smaller than Delaware

Land boundaries:
total : 404 km
border countries: Israel 307 km, Jordan 97 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: temperate, temperature and precipitation vary with altitude, warm to hot summers, cool to mild winters

Terrain: mostly rugged dissected upland, some vegetation in west, but barren in east

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Dead Sea -408 m
highest point: Tall Asur 1,022 m

Natural resources: NEGL

Land use:
arable land: 27%
permanent crops : 0%
permanent pastures: 32%
forests and woodland: 1%
other: 40% (1998 est.)

Irrigated land: NA sq km

Natural hazards: NA

Environment - current issues: NA

Environment - international agreements:
party to: none of the selected agreements
signed, but not ratified : none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: landlocked; highlands are main recharge area for Israel's coastal aquifers; there are 203 Israeli settlements and civilian land use sites in the West Bank and 26 in East Jerusalem (August 1996 est.)


Population:2,163,667 (July 2002 est.)
note: in addition, there are about 182,000 Israeli settlers in the West Bank and about 176,000 in East Jerusalem (August 2001 est.)

Age structure:
0-14 years: 44.4% (male 492,446; female 468,321)
15-64 years : 52% (male 575,282; female 550,793)
65 years and over:3.6% (male 33,163; female 43,662) (2002 est.)

Population growth rate:3.39% (2002 est.)

Birth rate: 34.94 births/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Death rate: 4.26 deaths/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Net migration rate:3.18 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Sex ratio:
at birth :1.06 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.76 male(s)/female
total population: 1.04 male(s)/female (2002 est.)

Infant mortality rate: 21.24 deaths/1,000 live births (2002 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 72.47 years
male: 70.76 years
female:74.29 years (2002 est.)

Total fertility rate: 4.77 children born/woman (2002 est.)

noun : NA
adjective: NA

Ethnic groups: Palestinian Arab and other 83%, Jewish 17%

Religions: Muslim 75% (predominantly Sunni), Jewish 17%, Christian and other 8%

Languages: Arabic, Hebrew (spoken by Israeli settlers and many Palestinians), English (widely understood)

Literacy: NA


Country name:
conventional long form: none
conventional short form: West Bank

Data code: WE


Economy - overview: Economic output in the West Bank is governed by the Paris Economic Protocol of April 1994 between Israel and the Palestinian Authority. 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; unemployment 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 five 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 Palestinian 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, internal turmoil and Israeli military measures in Palestinian Authority areas have resulted in the destruction of much capital plant and administrative structure, widespread business closures, and a sharp drop in GDP. Another major loss has been the decline in earnings of Palestinian workers in Israel

GDP: purchasing power parity - $2.1 billion (2001 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: -35% (2001 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $1,000 (2001 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
industry: 28%
services: 63%
note:includes Gaza Strip (1999 est.)

Inflation rate - consumer price index: 1% (includes Gaza Strip) (2001 est.)

Labor force: NA
by occupation: services 66%, industry 21%, agriculture 13% (1996)
note: excluding Israeli settlers

Unemployment rate: 26% (includes Gaza Strip) (2001 est.)

revenues: $930 million
expenditures: $1.2 billion, including capital expenditures of $15 million
note : includes Gaza Strip (2000 est.)

Industries: 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: NA%

Electricity - capacity: NA kW
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; at the same time, some Palestinian municipalities, such as Nabulus and Janin, generate their own electricity from small power plants

Electricity - production: 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; at the same time, some Palestinian municipalities, such as Nabulus and Janin, generate their own electricity from small power plants

Electricity - consumption per capita: NA kWh

Agriculture - products: olives, citrus and other fruits, vegetables; beef, dairy products

total value: $603 million (includes Gaza Strip) (f.o.b., 2001 est.)
commodities : olives, fruit, vegetables
partners: Israel, Jordan, Gaza Strip

total value:$1.9 billion (includes Gaza Strip) (c.i.f., 2001 est.)
commodities: food, consumer goods, construction materials
partners :Israel, Jordan, Gaza Strip

Debt - external:$108 million (includes Gaza Strip) (1997 est.)

Economic aid:
recipient: $800 million disbursed (includes Gaza Strip) (2001 est.)

Currency: 1 new Israeli shekel(ILS) = 100 new agorot; 1 Jordanian dinar (JOD) = 1,000 fils

Exchange rates:new Israeli shekels per US dollar - 4.2757 (December 2001), 4.2057 (2001), 4.0773 (2000), 4.1397 (1999), 3.8001 (1998), 3.4494 (1997); Jordanian dinars per US dollar - fixed rate of 0.7090 (from 1996)

Fiscal year: calendar year (since 1 January 1992)


Telephones: 95,729 (total for West Bank and Gaza Strip) (1997)

Telephone system:
domestic: NA
international : NA
note: Israeli company BEZEK is responsible for communication services in the West Bank

Radio broadcast stations: AM 1, FM 0, shortwave 0

Radios: NA; note - 82% of Palestinian households have radios (1999)

Television broadcast stations: 0

Televisions: NA; note - 54% of Palestinian households have televisions (1999)


Railways: 0 km

total:4,500 km
paved: 2,700 km
unpaved:1,800 km (1997 est.)
note:Israelis have developed many highways to service Jewish settlements

Ports and harbors: none

Airports: 3 (2001)

Airports - with paved runways:
total: 3
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
under 914 m: 1 (2001)


Military branches: NA

Military manpower - availability:
males age 15-49: NA

Military manpower - fit for military service:
males : NA

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $NA

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: NA%

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international: 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

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