Boost for disaster planning in Pakistan

17 Jul 18

Pakistan’s plans to deal with natural disasters are being reinforced by the Swiss Embassy in the country and the Asian Development Bank.

The support comes after the Pakistani government launched a National Disaster Risk Management Fund to finance investments in risk reduction and preparedness that have high economic impact.

Under the new agreement, signed on Monday, the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation will provide 1.5m swiss francs ($1.5m) to the fund, as well as technical assistance through a disaster risk finance specialist.

The Asian Development Bank has worked with Pakistan’s government and other development partners to secure further funding to reduce disaster risk and increase the country’s capacity to deal with future challenges.

The Pakistani fund was created with an initial ADB loan of $200m to reduce socioeconomic and fiscal vulnerability to natural disasters. The government of Australia also offered a $3.4m grant.

The bank said: “Pakistan remains a disaster-prone country with frequent floods and other disasters caused by climate change.

“In the last 15 years, Pakistan lost 85,000 people, including more than 26,000 children, and suffered substantial economic losses due to various disasters.

“The government as well as the affected people had limited capacity and resources to recover, resulting in disproportionate compensations to affected individuals.”

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