ADB to Help Restore Pakistan's Earthquake-Affected Households
A US$5 million Asian Development Bank (ASX: ATB) grant will help poor households affected by the October 2005 earthquake in Pakistan begin restoring their livelihoods.
The earthquake, arguably the most debilitating natural disaster in Pakistan's history, affected about 3.5 million people. About 80% of the population in the affected areas remains homeless.
The grant, from ADB's Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction (JFPR), financed by the Government of Japan, will target between 8,000 and 10,000 poor and vulnerable households in the largely inaccessible earthquake-affected areas.
In coordination with government agencies and nongovernment organizations, the project will provide households living at higher altitudes with material for the cultivation of spring crops, such as maize, fodder, and vegetables. The higher-altitude districts, above 1,500 meters, were relatively more affected than lower lying areas.
Landless community members will be given small amounts of livestock and poultry, including shelters and feeds. The earthquake damaged about 70% of the harvested and standing crops, and killed about half of the animals. Irrigation and soil conservation structures, as well as livestock shelters, were extensively damaged.
"The most urgent needs are subsistence-level crop and livestock husbandry activities to ensure food-security for the landless and those who lost their livestock, and the shelters to stock livestock from perishing in the cold of the Himalayan winter," says Ahsan Tayyab, an ADB Project Economist.
In addition, small-scale facilities, such as drinking water supplies, will be rehabilitated as needed. Damage to natural resources, roads, buildings, and communications networks keeps the affected households from continuing their livelihood activities, and thus threatens food security.
The project complements ADB's Earthquake Emergency Assistance Project, which was backed by an assistance package comprising a $220 million loan and $80 million grant approved in December 2005. The Government and participating organizations will contribute $200,000 equivalent in-kind toward the project's total cost of $5.2 million. The Ministry of Food, Agriculture, and Livestock is the executing agency.
JFPR was set up in 2000 with an initial contribution of Y10 billion (about $90 million), followed by additional contributions of $155 million and a commitment of $50 million.
About ASIAN DEVELOPMENT BANK: ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in the Asia and Pacific region through pro-poor sustainable economic growth, social development, and good governance. Established in 1966, it is owned by 64 members - 46 from the region.
In 2005, it approved loans and grants for projects totaling $6.95 billion, and technical assistance amounting to $198.8 million.