The World Bank will provide additional finance of US$26 million to Guyana for supporting the Guyana Flood Risk Management Project.
The approval for the additional finance is given by the Board of Executive Directors of the World Bank.
The additional finance would support Guyana in improving the climate resilience of the country, along with protecting the economic activity while reducing the impact of natural disasters on the impoverished nation.
World Bank Resident Representative for Guyana and Jamaica said that around ninety per cent inhabitants of Guyana live on the narrow coastal plain, and the majority of the area of this plain is below sea level.
He added that a severe and recurrent risk to the lives and livelihood of the people in the agricultural sector is posed by flooding as the plain is below the sea level.
The Representative added that by providing additional resources, the World Bank would help in protecting some of the most populous areas of Guyana and also support the nation in building greater climate resilience.
The project aims at increasing flood resilience in the low-lying areas of the East Demerara, which is along the coast.
These low lying areas include the capital of Guyana, Georgetown, where the and commercial activities and the majority of the population are concentrated.
The additional financing would include work to improve one of Guyana’s primary water storage and flood control facilities, the East Demerara Water Conservancy (EDWC). The project would improve the drainage systems which ensure the integrity of the EDWC dams.
It is noteworthy that the water stored in the EDWC dam is used to provide water to homes, reduce the risk of flooding and irrigate agriculture.
The project would include an update of flood modelling, the Emergency Preparedness Plan, the rehabilitation of small existing irrigation structures, communication, capacity building, as well as the outreach activities for informing the public better.
Also, Guyana receives interest-free financing from the International Development Association with a maturity period of 40 years, including ten years of the grace period.