The World Bank has launched a special program to improve disaster resilience in Uzbekistan with the financial support of the government of Japan.
Its principal coordinator is Uzbekistan’s Ministry of Emergency Situations in partnership with other ministries and government agencies involved in disaster risk management.
The opening ceremony of the program was attended by First Deputy Minister of Emergency Situations Komiljon Aripov, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan Nobuaki Ito, the World Bank country manager for Uzbekistan Jan-Peter Olters and the Bank’s disaster risk management specialist for Europe and Central Asia Ko Takeuchi.
According to Ko Takeuchi, the purpose sought by the program is to boost Uzbekistan’s potential in the area of protection of population and territory from emergency situations of natural and man-made disasters. For its implementation, the Japanese government has allocated $1.25 million.
Uzbekistan is located in a seismically active region and resilience to disasters is recognized by the government as an important aspect for the development of the country. Uzbekistan has a crisis situations control center, whose activities have been described by the First Deputy Minister of Emergency Situations Komiljon Aripov. “It is tasked with collecting and analyzing information about the current situation in the country, examining the factors that contribute to emergency situations, and working out recommendations for the government to eliminate the consequences in case of emergencies. In the center, experts of the Emergency Situations Ministry work in the everyday mode, and in the event of threats such as floods, avalanches, earthquakes specialists are invited from relevant ministries and agencies directly related to impending threats.”
As an example, Komiljon Aripov cited the case of a landslide (about 1 million cubic meters of soil) that took place in Sariasiya district of Surkhandarya region this spring. Experts of the State Committee for Geology, the Uzbek Meteorology Center, Uzavtoyul and other organizations were invited for modeling this situation who submitted their proposals on measures required to prevent the repercussions. As a result of urgent actions, we managed to avoid casualties and destruction.