WASHINGTON, June 3, 2014 - Today the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors approved a $60 million loan to the People’s Republic of China to reduce the vulnerability of fishing communities to extreme weather events in the country’s south eastern coastal Fujian Province.
Fishery is a very important sector in coastal Fujian Province and accounts for around 30 percent of its agricultural sector’s GDP. About 420,000 fishermen and their families depend on fish catching and aquiculture for a living. In recent years, extreme weather events have frequently hit the coast of Fujian and caused severe losses of life and damages to properties and livelihoods of people, especially fishermen, which are greatly exacerbated by the lack of adequate infrastructure, preparedness, and response and recovery measures.
The Fujian Fishing Ports Project will build or upgrade breakwaters, berthing facilities, embankments, land formation, trestle bridges, anchorages, accesses and port cottages in six fishing ports located in Beishuang, Dajing, Fenghuo, Lv’xia, Sansha, and Wen’ao of Xia’pu County. The project will also support the preparation of an Early Warning and Emergency Response Plan, which will include a comprehensive list of actions to be carried out at different typhoon warning levels by both the government and fishery communities. Equipment to aid officers in the Emergency Response and Command Center of Xia’pu County will be provided and a decision-making process for emergency response will be established. Training and capacity building activities will be carried out to ensure the effectiveness of the emergency preparedness system, and better prepare fishermen to respond to emergencies.
“By combining coastal engineering investments with improvement of early warning and emergency response systems, the project is likely to reduce losses of lives and damages or losses of vessels in the project counties in Fujian caused by extreme weather events, such as typhoons and seasonal storms,” said Hu Shunong, World Bank Senior Water Engineer and task team leader of the project.