The European Commission has announced it will allocate €11 million for disaster preparedness and humanitarian aid in Nepal, the Philippines, and other countries in the South East Asian region to support those affected by natural hazards, the coronavirus pandemic, and conflicts.
Commissioner for Crisis Management, Janez Lenarčič said: “The EU is stepping up its support to the most vulnerable affected by natural hazards in Nepal, the Philippines, and several countries in South East Asia. It is a region which is one of the most affected by natural disasters and climate change impacts globally. We also support those affected by the protracted conflict in the Philippines, while strengthening the preparation and response to the coronavirus pandemic. This aid package demonstrates the EU's continued commitment to help those in need.”
Of this funding, €9 million will target disaster preparedness actions and contingency response plans in the mentioned countries. €2 million will also go for humanitarian assistance for those affected by the protracted conflict in the Philippines, strengthen the support against the coronavirus pandemic, as well as other humanitarian operations in the country.
Notably, EU humanitarian aid will prioritise the most vulnerable, conflict-affected communities in Mindanao in need of food assistance, protection, emergency livelihood, health, water, sanitation, nutrition services, and emergency shelters.
Nepal is one of the most disaster-prone countries in the world due to its location and variable climatic conditions. Climate change and an increasing population further exacerbate the impacts of natural hazards, which each year cause heavy loss of life and damage to property.
The European Union continuously supports initiatives that reduce the risks of natural hazards and improve the disaster preparedness capacities of vulnerable populations, having allocated over €107 million in humanitarian aid since 2001.
Countries in South East Asia region, are very frequently affected by natural hazards such as floods, droughts and typhoons. The European Union funds projects that focus on enhancing community resilience and disaster preparedness capacities.
Beyond natural hazards, the population of the Philippines is also affected by ongoing conflict between the government and armed groups in the southernmost island of Mindanao. The precarious situation in the country often results in significant loss of life, livelihoods and homes. The European Union has provided close to €129 million since 1996.