Panama Receives $100 Million Loan to Aid Natural Disaster Response

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By the Caribbean Journal staff

Panama is working to increase its ability to withstand natural disasters, like the severe flooding that disrupted navigation on the Panama Canal in 2010.

Now, with help from a $100 million standby loan from the Inter-American Development Bank, it will do just that.

“Rapid access to liquidity will reduce the impact that any emergency may have on public finances, ensuring greater stability in long-term economic growth,” said Juan Jose Durante, the IDB’s project team leader.

Panama has the 14th-greatest exposure in the world to natural hazards, according to the World Bank.

The 2010 floods affected nearly 16,000 people, with the cost of repairing infrastructure and promoting economic recovery totaling nearly $150 million.

The loan will go toward financing a range of services, along with medical equipment, vaccines and temporary shelters.