$200 Million ADB Loan to Help Uttarakhand Recover from Unprecedented Disaster

NEW DELHI, INDIA - The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of India today signed a $200 million loan to help the state of Uttarakhand recover from the unprecedented floods and landslides in June last year that have affected about 1 million people.

“The loan will help in the economic and social recovery of Uttarakhand by rebuilding roads and bridges, tourism infrastructure, and urban water systems, and by improving disaster preparedness,” said M. Teresa Kho, Country Director of ADB’s India Resident Mission.

The loan agreement was signed in the state capital of Dehradun in the presence of ADB President Takehiko Nakao, who is visiting India, and Dinesh Agarwal, Minister of Planning, Government of Uttarakhand. During his visit to Uttarakhand, Mr. Nakao viewed by helicopter the disaster-affected areas in the state and discussed rehabilitation issues with Chief Minister Harish Rawat. Mr. Nakao expressed his condolences to the people affected by the natural disaster during his meeting with the Chief Minister and reaffirmed ADB's commitment to the State Government in the reconstruction and rehabilitation effort.

Nilaya Mitash, Joint Secretary (Multilateral Institutions), Department of Economic Affairs in the Ministry of Finance signed the agreement on behalf of the Government of India while Rakesh Sharma, Additional Chief Secretary, and Bhaskaranand Joshi, Secretary, Disaster Management Department, signed on behalf of the Government of Uttarakhand. Ms. Kho signed for ADB.

“Many lives were lost in the June 2013 natural disaster in Uttarakhand that also caused massive damage to physical infrastructure. The loan will help rehabilitate and reconstruct critical infrastructure and assets with disaster-resilient measures that would facilitate better preparedness for future disaster management,” said Mr. Mitash.

ADB’s loan will be used to rebuild 2,400 kilometers of state roads and reconstruct 16 damaged bridges. Damaged urban infrastructure, including roads, will also be rebuilt, and water supply facilities, including water treatment plants and water pipelines, will be rehabilitated in eight to 10 towns. About 50 helipads, heliports, or helidromes will also be built for emergency evacuation and relief operations.

A $2 million technical assistance will help Uttarakhand implement the works and adopt modern technologies in road and tourism infrastructure.

On top of the $200 million loan, ADB is also providing $15 million to repair damaged energy installations under an already approved $300 million ADB financing facility that has been earmarked for the Uttarakhand power sector.