(PRESS RELEASE) – The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors approved today a US$31 million additional financing to an ongoing project from the International Development Association for building resilient infrastructure and strengthening the government’s capacity to manage disaster risks in the Eastern Caribbean island of Dominica, which was hit by Hurricane Maria just over a year ago.
“This is an opportunity for Dominica to build back better in line with its priority for climate-smart investments. This will help reduce the island’s future vulnerabilities due to its location on the hurricane corridor,” said Tahseen Sayed, World Bank’s Country Director for the Caribbean. “This additional financing will improve access to the eastern part of the country and contribute to the economic regeneration for the region.”
The Dominica Disaster Vulnerability Reduction project has started the rehabilitation of the East Coast road and construction of the West Coast Water Tanks. The road provides an alternative route to the main airport in Melville, which is critical to improve mobility on the island. Up to 3,000 families will benefit from improved access to water through the tanks. Additional hazard risk mapping and assessments will also be conducted and the building of a hydrometeorological network is expected to be completed in the coming months.
The devastating losses and damages in infrastructure following Tropical Storm Erika in 2015 and Hurricane Maria in 2017 highlighted the need to strengthen the climate resilience of the East Coast road, and enhance the water distribution system and access roads for the Western Coast tanks.
This project is part of a larger US$115 million package of support from the World Bank for hurricane response. The package includes financing in concessional terms and US$50 million in grant financing from the International Development Association’s (IDA) Crisis Response Window*.
* The IDA Crisis Response Window is designed to help IDA-eligible countries recover from severe disasters and crises.