The Asian Development Bank (ADB) announced on Monday that a $554 million financing package, including new and reallocated funds, had been approved to support recovery and reconstruction efforts in Pakistan following in the aftermath of devastating floods, and to strengthen the country’s disaster and climate resilience.

“The financing, which includes a $475m loan and a $3m technical assistance grant from the ADB, and a $5m grant from the government of Japan, will support the restoration of irrigation, drainage, flood risk management, on-farm water management, and transport infrastructure in the flood-affected provinces of Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Sindh,” the press release said.

“The ADB’s Emergency Flood Assistance Project will also incorporate climate and disaster resilience measures into the design of the infrastructure. ADB has repurposed an additional $71 million from existing loans to support the government’s flood-response efforts,” it added.

ADB Central and West Asia Director General Yevgeniy Zhukov said the floods were a “devastating reminder” of Pakistan’s acute vulnerability to climate change.

“This project will help to rebuild critical infrastructure in affected areas and restore rural livelihoods,” Zhukov said.

The ADB noted that Pakistan suffered unprecedented heatwaves from April to June, followed by the catastrophic flooding.

A post-disaster needs assessment conducted by the government and development partners, including ADB, estimated total damage and losses at more than $30 billion and recovery and reconstruction needs at $16.3bn, it said.

“The loan will reconstruct about 400km of roads; about 85 km of the N-5, the country’s busiest national highway; and about 30 bridges. It will also help to restore and upgrade irrigation and drainage structures including canals and on-farm water facilities to restore livelihoods, and strengthen flood risk management structures to mitigate future risks to agricultural land, communities, and assets,” the press release said.

ADB Principal Transport Specialist Zheng Wu said that citizens were expected to fall into poverty in the aftermath of the floods while food insecurity would also increase.

“In close coordination with the government and other development partners, this project will provide crucial support to restore agriculture and other priority infrastructure to support socioeconomic recovery from floods,” he said.

Funded through the Japan Fund for Prosperous and Resilient Asia and the Pacific, the $5m grant will support staple crop cultivation in Balochistan and provide at least 60,000 farm households with higher quality, certified rice seeds for increased productivity over 54,000 hectares of land. The grant will also support women’s livelihoods in agriculture by providing farming equipment.

The $3m technical assistance grant will support the implementation of the project and the preparation of an ensuing flood risk management investment.

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