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The EU is the most important donor for the Palestinian people, and a reliable and predictable partner. It is present at all levels of Palestinian life, from supporting the establishment of the future Palestinian State and building new infrastructure across Palestine to supporting Palestinian civil society.
In line with the Palestinian National Development Plan 2014-2016 and the Division of Labour with its Member States, EU cooperation has been targeting efforts on the following focal sectors: (i) Support for governance at local and national levels; (ii) Support for the private sector and sustainable economic development; and (iii) Support for water and land development.
Within the context of the new National Policy Agenda (NPA) 2017-2022, European development partners (the EU, its Member States, and Norway and Switzerland as like-minded countries) have come together to develop the first-ever European Joint Strategy 2017-2020, which is aimed at aligning and synchronising with the NPA in order to improve the effectiveness of European programming for Palestine. They have agreed to focus their development financing and technical support on five core Pillars in the coming four years:
(i) Governance Reform, Fiscal Consolidation and Policy (Macroeconomic and Public Finance Management, Public Administration and Local Governance);
(ii) Rule of Law, Justice, Citizen Safety and Human Rights (Justice, Safety and Human Rights legislation);
(iii) Sustainable Service Delivery (Education, Health and Social Protection);
(iv) Access to Self-Sufficient Water and Energy Services (Infrastructure focus); and
(v) Sustainable Economic Development (Agriculture and Private Sector).
This new European Joint Strategy 2017-2020 will be replacing the Single Support Framework that ends in December 2016 and will be used as a strategic reference document by all European development partners:
East Jerusalem Programme
Area C programme
Apart from bilateral assistance, the Occupied Palestinian Territory benefits from additional EU funds under thematic programmes such as:
The EU works closely with civil society to manage these thematic programmes, for example by assessing the needs of Palestinian civil society organisations.
Palestinian institutions also benefit from regional Higher Education programmes such as Erasmus+. Erasmus+ Palestine has been participating in the Tempus programme since 2002 and the Erasmus+ Capacity-building in Higher Education (CBHE) action (which replaces Tempus) since 2015. CBHE is the main instrument of the Erasmus+ Programme targeting higher education institutions and systems in Partner Countries1 of the EU.
The programme has been developed by the European Commission in Brussels and is implemented by the Executive Agency for Education, Audiovisual and Culture (EACEA) in Brussels and the National Agencies (NAs) located in each of the 33 Programme Countries.
 All countries in the world with the exception of the Erasmus+ Programme Countries (countries which contribute directly to the budget of Erasmus+) and industrialised countries.