Pakistan to receive $1.7b from World Bank in flood relief assistance

World Bank Regional Vice President for South Asia Martin Ricer called on Power Minister Khurram Dastgir on September 22, 2022 in Islamabad. PID

Martin Riser, the World Bank’s regional vice president for South Asia, said the bank plans to provide up to $1.7 billion in flood-related assistance through current and future projects.

on Thursday [September 22]Martin Ricer led a delegation to meet Federal Minister Power Engineer Khurram Dastgir Khan in Islamabad.

The Minister apprised the WB Vice President about the unprecedented disaster caused by floods in Pakistan. He apprised the World Bank delegation about the disaster and the economic plight of the people.

The Energy Minister further highlighted how the tireless efforts of his Ministry and the Government of Pakistan helped restore power to most of the flood-affected areas.

The minister assured the World Bank that the current government is committed to addressing inefficiencies as well as enhancing reforms and recovery in the energy sector.

Martin expressed his deep regret over the devastating floods and said the purpose of his visit was to assess the situation on the ground.

He added that the World Bank has a huge portfolio in Pakistan. This could take the form of strengthening social protection programs, new emergency operations to support recovery and long-term resilience efforts, he said.

According to a WB official, Pakistan has one of the largest energy portfolios of the World Bank. He added that Pakistan’s policy shift towards renewables is a step in the right direction. He said that this is the best opportunity for Pakistan to shift its energy matrix towards renewable sources.

The World Bank official praised the minister for taking the right steps regarding tariff adjustment regardless of the political cost, as the energy sector is critical to the country’s fiscal stability.

The World Bank delegation included Country Director Naji Benhasin, Operations Manager Mr. Gillis J. Drauglis, Program Leader Ms. Teuta Kakaniko, IFC Country Manager Zeeshan Ahmed Sheikh. and Ms. Ewa Sobczynska, Special Assistant to the Vice President.

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