BRUSSELS, Tuesday, April 30, 2019 (WAFA) – Britain announced today a contribution of 9 million pounds for the Gaza water desalination plant, said Mazen Ghneim, head of the Palestinian Water Authority (PWA).

This came during the opening of an international conference on the water desalination project in the Gaza Strip attended by 31 countries and held at the European Commission headquarters in Brussels.

The conference aims to raise money to be able to kick start the project after raising last year $565 million, or 80% of the total cost of the project.

Ghneim urged the donors at the opening of the conference to continue to support the project due to its importance to more than two million people living in the besieged Gaza Strip.

He said the PWA has completed the large part of the plan for the project and that work will start by the end of this year.

The plant is expected to provide 55 million cubic meters of water a year in the first stage until 2021, but will later expand to provide 110 million cubic meters of water every year.

He said the project is expected to save Gaza which only 3% of its current water is suitable for drinking while 97% of the coastal belt water is not suitable for human consumption, making the water desalination plant its only way out of this humanitarian crisis.