Posted: Monday, April 12, 2021. 1:46 pm CST.
By Zoila Palma: Today, the World Bank announced that it has disbursed US$20 million to support the Government of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines’ response to the crisis posed by the La Soufrière volcano eruption.
On April 8, the explosive eruption began and forced over 20,000 people to evacuate from the high-risk zones around the volcano, both to other parts of Saint Vincent and surrounding countries.
Explosions are continuing, and the falling ash is causing air quality concerns and interruptions in electricity and water supply.
“Our hearts are with the people of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines during this crisis. We are committed to supporting the response efforts at this critical time when the country faces this new disaster while already managing the social and economic effects of the pandemic,” said Tahseen Sayed, World Bank Country Director for the Caribbean.
The World Bank says that the funds are disbursed from a contingent credit line from the World Bank, known as the Catastrophe Deferred Drawdown Option (Cat-DDO), approved in June 2020.
The Cat-DDO instrument is designed to provide immediate liquidity to support a country’s efforts to recover from disasters triggered by natural hazards or a public health emergency.
“In recent years, the Government of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines has been making efforts to strengthen its preparedness and capacity to respond to disasters,” a statement noted.
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