S L infrastructure sectors get capacity building aid from UNDP /ADB
Sri Lanka will receive assistance from international donor agencies to build capacity in selected infrastructure sectors, so that appropriate disaster-resilient measures are defined and applied to pre-disaster preparation for recovery and post-disaster recovery efforts.
The effort will be rolled out by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) through its regional hub in Bangkok, with the financial support of the Asian Development Bank (ADB), under the freshly launched project ‘Resilient Infrastructure Through Enhanced Knowledge’.
The project embarked upon by the UN has recognised the necessity for greater investment in the planning process for disaster-resilient infrastructure across Asia and the Pacific.
Alongside Sri Lanka, receiving assistance under the project will also be Armenia, Cambodia and Fiji.
Considering the importance of water and food security, Sri Lanka has selected the irrigation sector to develop a comprehensive country-specific disaster recovery framework under this project, the UNDP said.
“The irrigation sector is one of the most important sectors in the country. Irrigation resilience is not only for water management but also provides inputs for agricultural expansion, facilitates technological change and helps increase sectoral productivity and the GDP of the country.
Introducing a disaster recovery framework will benefit the sector, as it ensures recovery to build back faster and better,” said Disaster Management Centre (DMC) Mitigation Research and Development Director Anoja Seneviratne.
The activities will concentrate on supporting Post-Disaster Needs Assessment (PDNA) training to government officials, utilising contingency and recovery tools and plans, improve financial preparedness planning, which will help to meet the resources required for disaster recovery and cover the additional costs of building forward better.
The project is implemented in collaboration with the DMC, National Planning Department, National Budget Department and all stakeholder agencies in the irrigation sector, including the Irrigation Department, Agrarian Development Department, nine Provincial Departments of Irrigation and Mahaweli Authority of Sri Lanka.
The first training on PDNA and disaster recovery planning took place in Colombo recently, with over 63 participants from across the above stakeholders, including engineers, planners and accountants.