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World Bank pledges US$65m for Dominica reconstruction

REBUILD: Dominica (Photo credit: Carlisle Jno Baptiste/AP/PA)

THE WORLD Bank has approved two emergency support operations totalling US$65 million for restoring agriculture livelihoods, strengthening resilience, and rebuilding houses destroyed by Hurricane Maria, Caribbean 360 reports.

This is the World Bank’s highest ever financing for Dominica and is part of a larger US$115 million package of support that includes financing of US$65 million in concessional terms and US$50 million in grant financing from the International Development Association’s (IDA) Crisis Response Window.

Dominica’s Prime Minister, Roosevelt Skerrit said: “This financing enables us to make two critical investments in our economic recovery following the devastation of hurricane Maria last year.

"These investments in agriculture and housing also represent vital components of our plan to make Dominica the first climate resilient nation in the world."

The Emergency Agricultural Livelihoods and Climate Resilience project (US$25 million) will help farmers and fisherfolk to restore their agriculture and fishing production and systems, and adopt climate smart practices.

The Housing Recovery project (US$40 million) will focus on rebuilding houses and improving the application of resilient building practices. The total $65 million project financing for these two projects includes the US$50 million of grant financing.

“Last year was a stark reminder that the Caribbean is a region most exposed to natural disasters,” said Tahseen Sayed, World Bank’s Country Director for the Caribbean.

“Through these projects we have an opportunity to contribute to Dominica’s efforts to build back better and smarter, with structures able to resist high winds, and help some of the most vulnerable including farmers and fisherfolk to cope with the shock and be better prepared for the next storm.

"We are committed to deepen our partnership with Dominica in support of its aspiration for becoming a climate resilient nation.”

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