THE GOVERNMENT is currently implementing a number of disaster resiliency initiatives to prepare the country for future calamities, with the help of funding from foreign governments.

The Department of Finance (DoF) said in project documents that the Disaster Risk Management and Institutional Strengthening project was funded by France via a 4.8 million euro grant.

The project aims to increase the resilience of cities and help local authorities better anticipate, prevent and mitigate the impact of calamities.

Loans amounting to 72.955 billion yen from Japan are meanwhile being deployed across four projects — the Pasig-Marikina River Channel Improvement Project Phase IV, the Cavite Industrial Area Flood Risk Management Project, the Flood Risk Management Project for Cagayan De Oro River, and the Flood Risk Management Project for the Cagayan River in northern Luzon, the Tagoloan River in Northern Mindanao and the Imus River in Cavite.

South Korea has meanwhile lent $80.48 million to establish the Integrated Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation Measures in Low-Lying Areas of Pampanga Bay Project.

South Korea has also extended a grant of $5.2 million to the Philippines to establish an automated Flood Early Warning System to help prevent the loss of life and damage to property in flood-prone communities in Greater Metro Manila and another grant of $21.76 million to construct an earth-filled dam, irrigation facilities, multi-purpose access roads, and reforestation of watershed area along the Pasa River in Isabela Province to reduce the adverse impact of climate change and enhance water management.

The Philippines also obtained a loan of $300 million from the World Bank for the Promoting Competitiveness and Enhancing Resilience to Natural Disasters project via a Programmatic Development Policy Loan (DPL) Series 1 of 3, which is now in the pipeline.

According to the DoF, the DPL series will support the promotion of competitiveness, enhancing fiscal sustainability, and strengthening financial and physical resilience to natural disasters. Another $300 million loan from the World Bank will be provided to strengthen the structural resiliency of an estimated 8,300 vulnerable schools, hospitals and other public buildings in case of a massive earthquake.

“While we put a premium on ensuring sound fiscal health in the face of natural disasters, we also acknowledge the strong need for initiatives that will address the long-term drivers for physical risk as well as those that will improve disaster response efforts,” the DoF said.

The government currently has parametric insurance in place, valid from Dec. 19, 2018 to Dec. 18, this year, which will provide $390 million to 25 selected provinces to support post-disaster rebuilding and recovery efforts. — Reicelene Joy N. Ignacio