Yangon Government to Use $117 Million to Improve Drainage Systems and Public Buildings

A man who is rowing on a drain that connect Pazundaung creek, one of important creek for Yangon’s drain system. Yangon government will use a $116 million loan from World Bank and a $1 million grant from Japan’s Southeast Asia Disaster Risk Insurance Facility to improve the drainage system and public buildings, according to Yangon Region Chief Minister.

He announced his plan at the Launch Workshop for ‘Myanmar and Southeast Asia Disaster Risk Management Plan’ which will be implemented by the Ministry of Planning and Finance and Yangon Region Government with the support from World Bank.

Using $177 million of funds in total, the Yangon regional government will conduct a systematical survey and analysis to order to see best how to improve Yangon’s drainage system. The goal is to prevent flooding during the rainy season or in case of disasters, as well as for the improvement of public establishments such as markets and hospitals.

‘‘It was a long wait for the funds and support from the World Bank. We have been waiting for it for six years, and now this is our chance. We will have a lot of opportunities to improve Yangon and Myanmar using these long term loans,’’ he said.

The World Bank board approved the proposal for the project, and the government has signed the agreement to improve drainage and public buildings. They formed task forces, outlined the plans and budget, provided purchasing training, finance training and management training to its employees.

‘‘This project will proactively help Myanmar to minimize its risks and be prepared for disasters. The World Bank looks forward to supporting Myanmar’s efforts to respond and recover quickly so that families are safe and can return to their daily lives soon after a disaster hits,’’ Mr. Ellen Goldstein, World Bank Country Director for Myanmar Cambodia and Lao PDR, said.

Japan’s SEADRIF has supported the effort with a $1 million grant for the project. The Ministry of Planning and Finance will use the grant to improve financial management and to reduce financial loss due to disaster.

Myanmar is one of the most disaster-prone countries in the world and loses up to $184 million due to natural disasters each year. The project is expected to benefit up to 5 million people.

Source: Myanmar Business Today