Jica to help Nepal recover from quake

- POST REPORT, Kathmandu

Jun 12, 2015-

The Japan International Cooperation Agency (Jica) has proposed to provide Nepal a comprehensive assistance package in the form of grant, loan and technical assistance to rebuild the country following the terrible earthquake.

The funds will be spent on rural housing and school reconstruction, maintenance of roads damaged by the quake and preparation of a comprehensive city resilience reconstruction master plan.  

According to the Jica proposal, its aid will be concentrated in three districts, namely Gorkha, Sindhupalchok and Kathmandu.

The Japanese aid agency said that its assistance would be based on a people-centric, inclusive, full-fledged approach to rural and urban areas towards Build Back Better (BBB). 

Jica will follow a multi-sectoral BBB approach in the hardest-hit districts of Gorkha and Sindhupalchok. A livelihood support programme will be implemented immediately to restore community incomes and a housing restoration mechanism will be established and conducted.

Likewise, essential social and public services will be provided and a community-help mechanism established.

Regarding the plan for the Kathmandu Valley, the Japanese aid agency has proposed developing a comprehensive city resilience reconstruction master plan and implementing a detailed risk assessment to reflect future risk assessment planning. 

The reasons why buildings collapsed will be analyzed to explore various measures for resilient city planning, the local economy including tourism will be supported and a resilient infrastructure will be achieved.

ìThey have not revealed the value of the assistance package,î said Hari Pandey, under secretary at the Finance Ministry. 

ìThey will probably announce the figure at the international donorsí conference scheduled for June 25.

However, Pandey confirmed that Jica had proposed providing a grant of Rs4 billion particularly intended for repairing the roads damaged by the quake. The money will be used to bring the damaged portions of the Kathmandu-Bhaktapur and Kathmandu-Sindhuli roads, known as BP Highway, back into shape. 

As per Jicaís proposal, it will provide loans to Nepal in partnership with multilateral donor agencies the World Bank (WB) and Asian Development Bank (ADB).

Pandey said that Jica would partner with the WB for rural housing reconstruction while it will partner with the ADB for school reconstruction. Jica will provide grants for both the tasks, according to the proposal. 

According to Pandey, the two sides are currently holding discussions on the proposal and it is yet to be approved by the government.

Meanwhile, the Home Ministry said that the quake had affected 4,113 schools across the country, fully damaging 12,971 classrooms. A total of 1,788 school toilets and 1,174 school water connections have been destroyed. Likewise, 510,762 private homes were fully ruined and 291,707 homes partially damaged.

Published: 13-06-2015 09:09

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