The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is providing emergency humanitarian assistance of 3 million U.S. dollars to help Cambodia recover from devastating floods that have affected 1.7 million people and caused an estimated 1 billion U.S. dollars in damage, the Bank said in a statement on Wednesday.
The grant, from its Asia Pacific Disaster Response Facility, will be used to provide rice seeds, make temporary repairs to irrigation canals and related facilities, and rapidly restore connectivity of damaged rural roads through cash-for-work programs, the statement said.
“ADB’s support is a direct response to the need for action on quick road repairs to ensure the smooth delivery of relief supplies and the provision of rice seeds to enable replanting before waters recede,” said Eric Sidgwick, ADB’s Cambodia country director.
While 20 provinces have been affected, the northwest region has been the hardest hit, comprising Banteay Meancheay, Battambang, and Siem Reap provinces.
Estimates suggest at least 440 kilometers of national roads and 3,693 kilometers of rural roads have been affected by the floods, which began in September. More than 240,000 hectares of transplanted rice or seedlings have been affected and large numbers of schools and hospitals severely damaged.
The impact of the flood is expected to be more extensive than that experienced after floods in 2000 and 2011, since the period of inundation has been prolonged, hampering initial efforts to mitigate destruction, the bank said. In some areas, waters still have not receded, making damage assessments difficult.