Pacific Islands boost financial resilience against natural disasters

Pacific Islands boost financial resilience against natural disasters | Insurance Business

Pacific Islands boost financial resilience against natural disasters

A new regional disaster risk finance project has been launched to provide countries in the Pacific better access to catastrophe risk insurance for natural disasters such as cyclones, earthquakes and tsunamis.

The US$29.73 million project, PCRAFI: Furthering Disaster Risk Finance in the Pacific was designed to support the PCRAFI Facility and provide technical assistance to develop disaster risk financing strategies.

The PCRAFI Facility, set up in June 2016, will allow for “fast cash injections for emergency response” and help “sustain essential services in times of crisis,” boosting the region’s ability to quickly respond to disasters, said Gaetan Pikioune, Vanuatu minister of finance and economic management.

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The new project was built on eight years of collaboration through the Pacific Catastrophe Risk Assessment and Insurance Initiative (PCRAFI), and from shared experiences from similar catastrophe risk pools supported by the World Bank in Africa and the Caribbean.

“This evolution of PCRAFI is a major advancement in the region to mitigate against the financial impacts caused by extreme climate, weather related and geological hazards,” said Dame Meg Taylor, Secretary-General of the Pacific Islands Forum.

“Countries have full ownership of the PCRAFI Facility, putting finance ministers in the driving seat for product development and for designing financial instruments that fit national disaster risk financing strategies.”

The PCRAFI Program is supported by more than US$40 million in grants funded through the G7 InsuResilience Initiative, which aims to increase access to climate risk insurance for the most vulnerable.

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