Bangladesh gets $100-million ADB grant to boost facilities for displaced Rohingya

A Rohingya refugee walks along the water with umbrella as parts of the Kutupalong camp flooded during heavy rain in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh, July 4, 2018. REUTERS/Mohammad Ponir Hossain

DHAKA (Reuters) – The Asian Development Bank (ADB) on Friday approved a grant of $100 million to Bangladesh, the first half of an assistance package to develop basic infrastructure and services for refugees from neighboring Myanmar, the bank said.

Bangladesh faces a challenge in managing refugee camps in its southern district of Cox’s Bazar, flooded by more than 700,000 people who fled violence in Rakhine State since late August, the United Nations and aid agencies say.

“ADB’s project in this first phase will seek to provide basic infrastructure and services that will ease vulnerabilities and risk of hunger, disease, and disaster,” said Takehiko Nakao, the president of the funding agency.

Bangladesh, which sought the aid at an annual meeting of the ADB in Manila in May, will supplement the grant with $20 million to fund the first phase, estimated to cost $120 million over 2-1/2 years.

The project will refurbish camp roads to link essential food storage and distribution centers, hospitals, schools, and improve emergency access.

It also aims to beef up disaster risk management in an area prone to cyclones and monsoon storms, by building shelters, landslide protection barriers and a network of storm water drains.