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Monday November 29, 2021

SDC to provide $1.5m for disaster risk management fund

July 17, 2018

Islamabad: The Embassy of Switzerland and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) signed an agreement on Monday to support the National Disaster Risk Management Fund (NDRMF), recently established by Pakistan to finance investments in disaster risk reduction and preparedness. Under this agreement, the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) will provide US $1.5 million to the fund.

The Ambassador of Switzerland to Pakistan Thomas Kolly and SDC officials from Switzerland attended the exchange of documents between ADB Country Director Xiaohong Yang and Stefanie Burri, Head of International Cooperation, Embassy of Switzerland. SDC officials from Switzerland included Sabine Rosenthaler Sherman, Desk Officer for Pakistan, Humanitarian Aid at SDC, Frank Wiederkehr, Desk Officer for Pakistan and Jean-Luc Bernasconi, Head of Division Europe, Asia and the Americas, Swiss Humanitarian Aid at SDC.

Building on Pakistan earthquake and flood reconstruction experience, ADB has been working with Pakistan and other development partners to develop a financing window to reduce disaster risks and increase capacity of the government to deal with future challenges. The efforts resulted in the establishment of the multi-donor NDRMF with an initial contribution of US $200 million to reduce socioeconomic and fiscal vulnerability to natural hazards.

The Fund was established to close the resource gap, not only in the aftermath of disasters but also make investments in projects meant to mitigate the risk of disasters. It will finance up to 70 per cent of the cost of eligible projects that will enhance Pakistan’s resilience to extreme weather events and other natural hazards. In addition, SDC will provide technical assistance to the Fund through secondment of a Disaster Risk Finance Specialist.

Pakistan remains a disaster-prone country with frequent floods and other disasters caused by climate change. In the last one and half decade, Pakistan lost 85,000 lives, including more than 26,000 children, and suffered substantial economic losses due to various disasters. The affected people had limited capacity and resources to recover.