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UN World Food Programme helps Kingdom in disaster management

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Senior Minister in charge of Special Missions Kun Kim shakes hands with World Food Programme Cambodia country director Francesca Erdelmann at the Peace Palace on Wednesday. Heng Chivoan

UN World Food Programme helps Kingdom in disaster management

The National Committee for Disaster Management (NCDM) and the UN World Food Programme (WFP) signed a five-year partnership agreement on Wednesday for collaboration on crisis management and disaster risk reduction in Cambodia at the Peace Palace.

The signing of the agreement was witnessed by Senior Minister in charge of Special Missions Kun Kim and World Food Programme Cambodia country director Francesca Erdelmann.

Kun Kim, who is also NCDM first vice president, said the agreement would help the Kingdom meet the targets of the National Action Plan for Disaster Risk Reduction 2019-2023.

“The selection of safe grounds, setup of a disaster management database, and plans for disaster response procedures are the focal points of the programme.

“These focal points would be developed along with efforts to improve quality standards, risk mitigation and technology transfer for the alert mechanism to inform people about approaching disasters,” he said.

He said that in the past, Cambodia had faced difficulties in preventing floods and other disasters that disrupted people’s livelihoods and which eventually affected economic development.

“I hope that the programme will equip officials at all levels with the latest know-how on disaster management, so there will be positive results,” said Kim.

He urged NCDM, WFP and other relevant parties to work closely in implementing the programme to achieve sustainable results.

Kim said floods had damaged 50,000ha of rice this year, but the NCDM had restored 10,000ha of the crop.

The NCDM had provided victims with rice seeds and also more than 1,000 tonnes of food. The national committee had regrown rice crops on more than 1,000ha of land.

He stressed that the NCDM had also funded the transportation of victims to safer grounds in disaster rescue operations.

Under the programme, he said, NCDM would allocate safe grounds in flood-prone provinces to build temporary homes for the victims to live in should a disaster strike.

Erdelmann said: “Through the five-year strategic agreement, the NCDM and WFP will implement the National Action Plan for Disaster Risk Reduction 2019-2023.

“Both parties have worked closely since 2004 to strengthen each other’s capacities to provide support for Cambodian people’s living when they are impacted by a disaster or natural disaster,” she said.

The collaboration, she said, would be supported by members of the Humanitarian Response Forum to strengthen the Kingdom’s capability to conduct analysis and develop risk reduction mechanisms in the event of disasters.

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