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Damage from deadly floods more than $10bn, may take five years to rebuild and rehabilitate, says Ahsan Iqbal

Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Ahsan Iqbal has said that early estimates have put the damage from Pakistan’s recent deadly floods at more than $10 billion, adding that it might take five years to rebuild and rehabilitate the nation.

In an interview with AFP, Iqbal said that there was a damage to nearly one million houses as people had lost their complete livelihoods.

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Ahsan Iqbal also told Reuters on the previous day that in the near-term, the country will be confronted with acute food shortages. He added that the world had an obligation to help cope with the effects of man-made climate change.

On the other hand, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa is visiting Swat today. COAS would be given a briefing about relief and evacuation in different areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), according to Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR).

According to ISPR, Canada, Azerbaijan and UK have pledged $5 million, $1.2 million and £1.5 million aid for flood affectees of Pakistan respectively.

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Finance Minister Miftah Ismail has also said that the estimated economic impact of floods would be at least $10bn, which roughly translates to three percent of gross domestic product of Pakistan.

Unprecedented flash floods due to historically high monsoon rains have washed away roads, crops, infrastructure and bridges, killing more than 1,000 people in recent weeks and affecting more than 33 million, over 15 percent of the country’s population.

Iqbal said that any formal requests for financial help would need to wait until the scale of the damage was known. Iqbal also said that those areas which used to receive rainfall weren’t receiving any and the areas which used to receive very mild rains were receiving very heavy rainfall.

Iqbal said 45 percent of cotton crops had been washed away with early wheat sowing in southern Pakistan also being affected, as large swathes of land remained inundated with flood water with severe damage to rice fields as well as vegetable and fruit crops.



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