World Bank gives Ethiopia $100m to fight drought

The World Bank has approved $100 million to help Ethiopia fight drought, officials said.

The bank's board of directors made the announcement Thursday in view of the current drought, considered Ethiopia's worst in 50 years.

Besides the eight million Ethiopians who have been receiving food aid for several years under the Productive Safety Net Programme (PSNP), an additional 10 million others needed urgent food assistance.

Additional financing

The government of Ethiopia issued a humanitarian appeal in December 2015, over the drought.

The government and partners have so far secured around 70 per cent of the total $1.5 billion ($1.2 billion in food assistance) that Ethiopia requires until the end of 2016.

The World Bank provided the fund through the International Development Association (IDA) Crisis Response Window (CRW) to PSNP Project 4, as additional financing.

“PSNP is providing regular cash or food transfers to eight million of the poorest people in those areas which are most often hit by drought,” said Ms Carolyn Turk, the Country Director for Ethiopia.

“The additional support will prevent millions of households from falling deeper into poverty, as a result of the drought.”

PSNP was helping Ethiopia to further reduce extreme poverty and promote shared prosperity by strengthening the resilience of the poorest households to natural shocks.

Total budget

The additional financing aims to help ensure that the poorest people in the drought affected area continued to receive reliable support from the government through to the next harvest, according to the World Bank.

The PSNP4 is implemented in 318 districts in Ethiopia, reaching 8 million food insecure people per year and includes a total budget of approximately $3.6 billion from the government and 11 development partners, including the World Bank.

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