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World Bank Reports on Disaster Risk Assessment Initiative in the Pacific

World BankApril 2012: The World Bank has reported on an initiative to develop disaster risk assessment tools and plan for future disaster risk reduction (DRR) in Pacific Island countries titled the Pacific Catastrophe Risk Assessment and Financing Initiative (PCRAFI).

According to the World Bank, PCRAFI carried out in Pacific Island countries and aims to reduce the region's vulnerability to natural disasters. The programme was designed to improve past and future disaster risk analysis through improved finance planning, more secure building codes, and more effective post-disaster procedure. The main outcome of the project was the implementation of the Pacific Catastrophe Risk Information System (PacRIS), which includes catastrophe risk models, country disaster risk profiles, and disaster risk financing and insurance. With this state-of-the-art database system, the region now has detailed information on historical natural disasters, accumulated losses, and an asset exposure database.

The PCRAFI is a joint initiative of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC)/Applied Geoscience and Technology Division (SOPAC), the World Bank, and the Asian Development Bank (ADB). Financing for technical assistance includes US$2.3 million by the Government of Japan, through the World Bank and ADB, and a US$1 million grant from the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR). [World Bank Press Release]