ISLAMABAD: The Executive Board of Asian Development Bank (ADB) will approve four projects for Pakistan with a total loan of about $700 million next week.

Sharing details with journalists on Monday, ADB Country Director Werner Liepach said these projects cover clean energy, disaster risk management, canal extension and public-private partnership investment.

The four projects together cover half of the ADB’s project loans for Pakistan in 2016.

The ‘Access to Clean Energy Investment Programme’ will receive an ADB loan of $325m with the outcome of access to sustainable and more reliable electricity services increased particularly for vulnerable communities in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab.

The French development agency – ‘Agence Française de Développement’ – will contribute $78.60m to the project. The clean energy investment project will be implemented over a period of five to ten years and will support the provincial governments of KP and Punjab to achieve increased access to sustainable and more reliable electricity services for vulnerable communities.

The project outcome will be achieved through expanding access to renewable energy, notably micro-hydropower plants in rural off-grid areas of KP, and decentralised solar plants for education and primary healthcare facilities in the two provinces; providing women and girls with increased opportunities to obtain energy services and benefits; and promoting public sector energy efficiency in Punjab.

The ADB country director described the ‘National Disaster Risk Management Fund’ project as a model for the whole region. It has been estimated that ADB will provide $125.33m for the project which will enable a resilient Pakistan with sustainable capacity to reduce disaster risk and manage residual impacts of natural hazards and climate variability.

It will also reduce socio-economic and fiscal vulnerability to natural hazards specifically helps reduce loss of millions of lives and properties, Mr Liepach said.

The Asian Development Fund (ADF) is likely to contribute $874m towards the project.

Frequent disasters in Pakistan pose a significant risk to fiscal stability of the federal and provincial governments. The federal government in particular often requires significant additional resources to respond to disasters and rebuild the country’s social and economic infrastructure.

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