The World Bank has agreed to grant Tunisia a $50 million loan to face natural disasters and climate change.
The World Bank said that the loan was granted to Tunisia after the approval of the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors.
The new loan is in addition to a $50 million loan provided by the French Development Agency (AFD), which aims to support and finance disaster risk management in Tunisia and strengthen the protection of people and properties, bringing the total funding of this project to $100 million, according to data from the World Bank.
Tunisia is vulnerable to a wide range of natural disasters, including floods, droughts, landslides, forest fires, sand encroachment and snowstorms.
The latest report on climate risks issued by the World Bank shows that Tunisia is highly vulnerable to climate change and is expected to face negative impacts due to higher temperatures, lower rainfall, more serious water shortages, as well as rising sea levels.
The World Bank Country Manager for Tunisia, Antonius Verheijen, said: “This project which was approved today, will help strengthen the government’s capacity regarding disaster risk management in order to protect Tunisians from more frequent and severe natural disasters,”
He added that the programme will work on “enhancing investment, resilience to face disasters and general policies related to public development including natural disaster insurance market.”
This project will support key parts of the Tunisia’s national strategy for disaster risk management the government considers crucial to protect Tunisians, including investment in infrastructure for cities most vulnerable to flood risks.
The project will combine interventions through many ministries and institutions to strengthen early warning systems, modernize climate and hydrometeorological services, and establish insurance mechanisms to protect Tunisians from the financial repercussions of natural disasters.
It will also combine the proposed disaster risk insurance programs between public financing and private sector insurance, improve laws to raise the level of coordination across sectors and regions, and enhance the comprehensive capacity to deal with disasters and climate change in Tunisia.