MANILA — The European Union Commissioner announced, in an Asia-Europe Meeting in Disaster Risk Reduction and Management, a €30 million grant to increase the EU’s reconstruction assistance fund for areas devastated by super-typhoon Yolanda.
The grant which came from European Commission’s development budget was announced by Kristalina Georgieva, the EU Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response, who also visited the EU-funded projects in Tacloban City.
“My visit to Tacloban has been a stark reminder of the devastation which hit the Philippines last November,” Georgieva said.
“Seven months on, many survivors are still struggling to recover. The need for assistance remains, but my visit has also been full of encouragement. Everywhere I turned, I saw people rebuilding their homes, replanting their fields, or reopening their businesses,” she added.
According to a statement from the EU delegation to the Philippines, the funding is “aimed at supporting post-Yolanda/Haiyan reconstruction under the program’s support to the implementation of the country’s universal health care framework through the availability of essential medicines, improved quality of health services, improved health insurance coverage and support to the post-typhoon reconstruction plan of the Philippines’s government.”
Meanwhile, EU Commissioner for Development Andris Piebalgs said in a GMA News report that ,”the current situation it is of great importance to combine short term relief operations with long term plans.”
“Since the disaster we have been active in focusing our development cooperation on activities that help the affected communities to recover and reconstruct, but also to prepare for possible future typhoons. This will help to fight poverty immediately and at the same time make people’s lives and livelihoods safer in the long term,” he added.