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World Bank approves $149.7 million financing for two Pakistan projects

By News Desk

March 23, 2024 02:59 PM


World Bank approves $149.7 million financing for two Pakistan projects

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World Bank's Board of Executive Directors has approved $149.7 million in financing for Pakistan to support Digital Economy Enhancement Project and Sindh Barrages Improvement Project, reported 24NewsHD TV channel on Saturday.

According to details, $78 million have been allocated for Digital Economy Enhancement Project which aims at the expansion of digitally enabled public services delivery for citizens and firms.

While $71.7 million additional financing has been approved for the Sindh Barrages Improvement Project which will support better resilience to floods and improvements in the reliability, safety, and management of the Sindh barrages.

Najy Benhassine, World Bank Country Director for Pakistan said,"The catastrophic floods that hit Pakistan in 2022 were a tragic reminder of the importance to build resilience to such disasters, including by strengthening barrages and their management".

He said the Digital Economy Enhancement Project (DEEP) will develop digital authentication and data-sharing platforms to enable Pakistan to respond more effectively and efficiently to shocks, deliver better e-government services to citizens and firms, and support regulatory reforms in the sector.

The project will also promote financial inclusion by enabling women in particular, to open bank accounts or apply remotely for credit through a smartphone application. It will also contribute to addressing barriers such as limited mobility and digital literacy.

"The digital economy and demand for digital government services have been growing across the country, increasing the need for connectivity, digital payments, and secure and trusted digital transactions. The project aims at digital transformation and will help ensure that digital platforms are inclusive and trusted," said Shan Rehman, Task Team Leader for the project.

The second additional financing for the Sindh Barrages Improvement Project (SBIP) will support the full completion and commissioning of the Guddu and Sukkur barrages rehabilitation works and improve the management of three barrages in Sindh including Guddu, Sukkur and Kotri.

The additional financing will also contribute to strengthening the provincial Barrage Management Unit's technical capacities, promoting women's participation in emergency preparedness, and implementing extensive citizen engagement and stakeholder participation.

"Barrages such as the ones supported by SBIP are critical for the livelihoods and climate-resilience of the Sindh Province," said Francois Onimus, Task Team Leader for the project. The project will increase the resilience of the canal systems that are fed from these barrages, reducing the adverse impacts of extreme floods and drought events.

 

Reporter: Waqas Azeem


News Desk


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