||This Project is in response to the two tropical cyclones and two earthquakes in Vanuatu. The paths of the two cyclones crossed through the center of Vanuatu and directly impacting populated islands and causing severe damage to infrastructure, buildings, connectivity, and crops. The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) estimates that approximately 251,000 people (approximately 80% of Vanuatu's population) have been exposed to the impacts of the cyclones, with 5,156 people registered in 106 evacuation centers in Shefa and Tafea. The United Nations Resident Coordinator for Vanuatu confirmed Vanuatu's Ministry of Finance and Economic Management estimates that the impact of the disaster is at 40% of the gross domestic product with recovery costs estimated at $50 million, noting that the damage assessment is ongoing.
|Project Rationale and Linkage to Country/Regional Strategy
Vanuatu was hit by two consecutive tropical cyclones on 1 and 3 March 2023, and two earthquakes on 3 March 2023. Category 4 Tropical Cyclone (TC) Judy made landfall on 1 March 2023 with maximum sustained winds of 157 kilometers per hour. On 3 March 2023, category 4 TC Kevin moved southeast over Vanuatu with maximum sustained winds of 135 kilometers per hour and heavy rainfall. On 2 March 2023, the government declared a 6-month state of emergency covering three provinces and parts of other provinces. On 5 March 2023, the state of emergency was updated to encompass the entire country.
The combined damage caused by TC Judy, TC Kevin, and the two earthquakes within a 3-day period is of a scale beyond the government's capacity to restore life-sustaining services to the affected population in a reasonable time. Vanuatu's resources were already strained as previous disaster recovery efforts continue following the impacts of TC Tino in January 2020, TC Harold in April 2020, and the state of emergency in place from March 2020 to February 2022 in response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. There is a clear need to supplement government resources with additional support from development partners.