- UK Chamber of Commerce trade delegation in Ghana t...
- US commits $200 million towards northern developme...
- MTN invests US$105 million in network infrastructu...
- Nominations opens for Ghana made products award 20...
- Ghana Aid Effectiveness Forum launches 2012 Budget...
- AGI launches 2nd Ghana Industry Awards
- Third tier pension could secure employees loyalty-...
- Projections in Budget Statement Understated-ACEP
- Parliament approves budget estimates for eight pub...
- US Ambassador to Ghana calls on Energy Minister
- NGO to aid producers of handicraft in U/E to impro...
- GIS impounds smuggled fuel and pharmaceutical Prod...
- Finance Minister urges private sector to invest in...
- Review the nation’s tax regime to save the priva...
- Ghanaian businesses in the oil sector must be empo...
Category: Business & Economics Created on Thursday, 10 May 2012 08:59 Published Date Written by GNA Hits: 260
Accra, May 09, GNA - The World Bank on Wednesday said nine million people are currently facing food shortages in the Horn of Africa, down from a high of 13.3 million in September 2011 when the drought was at its peak.
It said nearly 14 million people in the Sahel region, which includes Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger are at risk of hunger because of drought, limited food, political instability, and periods of conflict.
In an update briefing to its Executive Directors, the Bank said it was working to alleviate the development impact of two simultaneous droughts in the Horn of Africa and the Sahel.
A statement from the Bank copied to the GNA said a $1.8 billion Drought Response Plan for the Horn of Africa is underway to meet immediate food needs while looking at a broad, longer-term approach that combines investments in health and nutrition, with better weather forecasting, early warning systems, drought resilience, and other risk management measures.
To date, $147 million has been disbursed and $944 million has been committed for fast-tracking drought prevention projects and programs.
In addition to the above, the regional Horn of Africa Emergency Health and Nutrition project has helped treat over 35,000 malnourished children under age five living in refugee camps, with $30 million in funding from IDAs Crisis Response Window.
“Our strategy focuses on meeting immediate needs through ongoing development projects in the worst-hit countries and helping lay the foundations for long-term drought resilience, We are working closely with our countries and partners alike to deliver positive development results that would improve poor peoples’ lives”, said Makhtar Diop, World Bank Vice President for the Africa Region.
With a changing climate likely to intensify extreme weather events, the World Bank’s Africa teams are committed to help drought-affected countries in both regions to boost economic growth and alleviate peoples suffering.
On how the Bank is helping people in the Horn of Africa and the Sahel, the Bank said assessments show that the drought is having a significant, adverse impact on the region’s economic development.
It said financial losses for Djibouti, Kenya and Uganda alone could amount to as much as $13.6 billion whiles the outlook is sobering.
Average rainfall predicted for the Horn of Africa throughout 2012, are as follows;
Ethiopia: A new safety net program is supporting three million transitory, food-insecure people, and work is underway to strengthen social safety nets as well as to increase investments for boosting production and improving rural infrastructure to enable poor people to have better access to food.
Somalia: A $9 million Grant from Global Fund for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR) is providing 97,000 people with temporary employment through a Cash for Work program and supporting the recovery of food production through rehabilitation of productive assets such as land, livestock and water.
Drought in Horn of Africa and the unfolding events in the Sahel are having an enormous impact on the poor and those made homeless by conflict. Communities are simply unable to find food because its either too expensive, or they are forced to live on the run after being forced out of their refugee camps because of violence, says Jamal Saghir, World Bank Director for Sustainable Development in the Africa Region. Droughts always affect poor people the most.
The statement said drought in the Sahel is steadily worsening after less rainfall in 2011.
Large-scale refugee migrations are also worsening the droughts toll as in the case of Mali where a recent coup resulted in over 320,000 people being displaced.
The statement noted that other examples of the World Banks support to drought-hit countries in the Sahel were as follows
Niger: $15 million in supplemental budget support was provided to the Government to address the fiscal shortfall caused by the food crisis and the Libyan crisis, also four active investment lending operation were retrofitted to provide cash transfer, micro-projects and cash-for-work opportunities to the repatriates.
Chad: The Agriculture Production Support Project (PAPA) pipeline project was being reviewed to help improve the food security situation through accelerated financing of small-scale infrastructure and added that working in partnership is vital.
The World Bank is working closely with the UN system, the European Union, and regional institutions such as the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), Permanent Interstate Committee for Drought Control in the Sahel (CILSS) and Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) to foster cooperation across all sectors.
The work is benefiting from cutting-edge satellite surveillance and data-intensive efforts by leading organizations such as National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the new Information Technology for Humanitarian Assistance, Cooperation and Action (ITHACA) program which mobilizes ICT technology to tackle climatic problems.
Inter-Bank Forex Rates
Click here to see more Last Update: 13th Sep.