ISLAMABAD: The Resilient Recovery, Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Framework (4RF) to be presented to the International Conference on Climate Resilient Pakistan in Geneva on January 9, has identified housing, agriculture and livelihood as priority needs of flood-hit people of Pakistan from a humanitarian perspective and seeks urgent actions to meet these needs.

The document, released by UN Development Programme (UNDP), would lay a foundation on which the country will build and strengthen long-term resilience to climate-induced disasters. It provides programmatic priorities, policy framework, institutional arrangements, financing strategy, and implementation arrangements for resilient recovery, rehabilitation and reconstruction in the aftermath of the 2022 floods.

The 4RF paper comprising four Strategic Recovery Objectives (SROs) entails an investment of $16,260 million. The four SROs are: Enhance governance and the capacities of the state institutions to restore lives and livelihood of the affected people, especially the most vulnerable; restore livelihood and economic opportunities; ensure social inclusion and participation; and restore and improve basic services and physical infrastructure in a resilient and sustainable manner.

Needs are based on the Post-Disaster Needs Assessment (PDNA) already completed. Interventions of $16.6 billion have been proposed and prioritised over short- (one-year, medium (2 to 3 years) and long-term (4 to 7 years) horizons covering sectoral policy and operational reforms, investments/programmes for recovery, rehabilitation and reconstruction, and institutional effectiveness. Recovery interventions will be integrated and multi-sectoral, according to the document.

UNDP’s 4R framework paper ready for climate moot to be held in Geneva on Jan 9

The ADB, EU, UNDP and the World Bank have contributed to the preparation of 4RF and supported the process of prioritisation and sequencing of activities under the four Strategic Recovery Objectives, based on the needs identified across 17 sectors of the PDNA.

The 4RF also presents a long-term resilient reconstruction plan “Achieving Sustainable Climate Resilience” which incorporates climate resilience in the design of the existing and planned strategic infrastructure projects. This includes National Flood Protection Plan, National Highways (N-5, N-55, N-25), National Railway Lines (ML-1, ML-2, ML-3) and other strategic projects.

The cumulative long-term requirements to implement these projects will be $13.5 billion over a period of 10 years.

In the current macroeconomic context, the Pakistan government will need to reallocate budget for fiscal year 2022-23 to meet relief and recovery needs. Revenue generation and expenditure management measures have been suggested to increase fiscal space for the government.

The 4RF policy framework aims to address Pakistan’s most urgent and immediate post-disaster needs, while setting the direction for building long-term resilience.

Key policy imperatives include community-driven and people-centered approach, promotion of equality and opportunities for the poorest households, women and other vulnerable and marginalised groups disproportionately impacted by the floods, employment of rapid and efficient recovery mechanisms, incorporation of green and resilient principles through a ‘build back better’ approach, and risk-informed resilience.

A recovery and reconstruction unit will be housed in the Ministry of Planning and Development to provide overall coordination at the national level. Special units in provincial Planning and Development departments will lead implementation in collaboration with local government.

Objective of the 4RF financing strategy is to guide the identification, channeling and management of recovery, rehabilitation, and reconstruction finan­c­­es. Primary focus of the fi­­­n­an­­cing strategy is on mobilising and reallocating available government resources, coupled with measures to improve the efficient use of public resources and policy measures to increase fiscal space, and mobilisation of private sector financing and improvement of the Public-Private Partnership (PPP) framework will be critical.

Published in Dawn, December 31st, 2022

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