Japan Contributes Approximately US$ 40 Million for Assistance for Palestine Refugees

25 February 2021
The Acting Director of Partnerships of UNRWA, Marc Lassouaoui (left) and the Representative of Japan to Palestine, H.E. Ambassador Mr Magoshi Masayuki (right), signed two contribution agreements in support of Palestine refugees and amounting to approximately US$ million at UNRWA offices in East Jerusalem. © 2021 UNRWA Photo

The Government of Japan today signed two contribution agreements, amounting to approximately US$ 40 million, with the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA).

From the total contribution, US$ 30.2 million will enable UNRWA to continue providing critical and core services to Palestine refugees in all five fields of operations and another US$ 9.5 million approximately will be used to expand school blocks in Gaza, thus allowing more children to have access to quality education.

“I am very happy to announce that the Government of Japan is contributing approximately US$ 40 million to UNRWA. This contribution represents our determined commitment and solidarity to Palestine refugees at a time when the region continues to experience serious humanitarian crisis, including COVID-19 pandemic,” H.E. Ambassador Mr MAGOSHI Masayuki, Representative of Japan to Palestine, said.

Mr. Marc Lassouaoui, Acting Director of Partnerships of UNRWA, said: “On behalf of UNRWA, I would like to thank the Government of Japan for its generous contribution in benefit of the Palestine refugees. The Government of Japan has been exemplary in its support to the Agency. We deeply appreciate the steadfast and strategic cooperation that UNRWA and the Government of Japan have developed over years in support of this vulnerable community.”

The Government of Japan is a dedicated donor to UNRWA, having supported the Agency since 1953. In 2020, the Government of Japan was the overall 5th largest contributor to the Agency, playing a critical role at a time when UNRWA faced an existential crisis. It is thanks to the enduring support of donors like the Government of Japan that the Agency is able to provide vital services to Palestine refugees across the Middle East in the face of its continuing challenges. 

Background Information: 

UNRWA is confronted with an increased demand for services resulting from a growth in the number of registered Palestine refugees, the extent of their vulnerability and their deepening poverty. UNRWA is funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions and financial support has been outpaced by the growth in needs. As a result, the UNRWA programme budget, which supports the delivery of core essential services, operates with a large shortfall. UNRWA encourages all Member States to work collectively to exert all possible efforts to fully fund the Agency’s programme budget. UNRWA emergency programmes and key projects, also operating with large shortfalls, are funded through separate funding portals.

UNRWA is a United Nations agency established by the General Assembly in 1949 and mandated to provide assistance and protection to some 5.7 million Palestine refugees registered with UNRWA across its five fields of operation. Its mission is to help Palestine refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, West Bank, including East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip achieve their full human development potential, pending a just and lasting solution to their plight. UNRWA services encompass education, health care, relief and social services, camp infrastructure and improvement, protection and microfinance.

For more information, please contact:

Sami Mshasha
Director of Communications, Arabic Language Spokesperson
Mobile: 
+972 (0)54 216 8295
Office: 
+972 (0)258 90724
Tamara Alrifai
UNRWA Spokesperson
Mobile: 
+962 (0)79 090 0140