Press Release

UN-led Capacity for Disaster Risk Reduction Team concludes its scoping mission in Lao PDR

27 January 2020

Mitsamphan Secondary School, Attapeu Province, Lao PDR - Photo

Photo: © Mitsamphan Secondary School, Attapeu Province, Lao PDR.

Last year’s devastating floods caused population displacement and loss of income, disruption of social services and exacerbated malnutrition, health and education challenges. The Post Disaster Needs Assessment estimates the damages and losses at USD 371.5 million and stresses the need to incorporate disaster risk reduction and management (DRR/M) into the Lao national planning and implementation processes.

The Government has already made major strides to strengthen the integration and coordination of DRR/M across the socio-economic and environmental sectors. The new Disaster Management Law provides a guiding framework for better coordination of disaster preparedness, response and recovery interventions among the partners. Lao PDR has also embarked on the development of its new National Strategy for Disaster Risk Reduction, aligned with the Sendai Framework, and its monitoring and reporting systems.

The UN Country Team supports the Government in ensuring an effective, timely and coordinated response to reduce existing disaster and climate risks, prevent the creation of new risks on  Lao communities, and strengthen  their resilience and adaptive capacity to absorb shocks and mitigate their impacts. In addition to contributing to the PDNA, in 2018 the UN Country Team mobilized USD 8 million, including USD 3.5 million from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), supported the capacity of the National Emergency Operations Center. Beyond the emergency response, FAO, ILO, UNICEF, WFP and UNDRR are implementing a joint UN programme to strengthen the capacity of ASEAN Member States to design and implement risk-informed social protection systems to enhance resilience in Lao PDR.

“With the recent developments, including the new Disaster Management Law among others, there is a good momentum for the UN system to take stock of the progress and to shape a more coherent approach to supporting Lao PDR in disaster risk reduction and management in collaboration with other development counterparts to help ensure long-term resilience in the country,” said Sara Sekkenes, the UN Resident Coordinator in Lao PDR.

The CADRI Partnership engagement in Lao PDR will build on and complement the existing Government’s initiatives and ongoing support provided by the UN system and other development partners.

The preparation of the 9th NSEDP is opportunity to increase investment in prevention and preparedness measures and set clear targets in key sectors. The UN System stands ready to support the Government in the identification and implementation of these measures. The UN experts within the CADRI Partnership can help facilitate the process of identification and prioritization of such measures.

This year’s International Day for Disaster Risk Redaction (IDDRR) in Lao PDR is set to acknowledge the substantial progress of the ongoing regional and national interventions on construction and maintenance of critical infrastructure.

To mark the IDDRR 2019, today the Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare, in partnership with UNDP and WFP, organized the event and exhibition “Build to Last” at the Faculty of Engineering of the National University of Lao PDR. The event highlighted that disasters can be avoided or prevented if critical infrastructure in Lao PDR continues to function during and after a disaster.

UN-led Capacity for Disaster Risk Reduction Team concludes its scoping mission in Lao PDR

Somlith Khounpaseuth_Photo

Somlith Khounpaseuth

National Communications Consultant

UN entities involved in this initiative

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
International Organization for Migration
UN Women
United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women
United Nations Development Programme
UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
United Nations Population Fund
United Nations Children’s Fund
United Nations Office for Project Services
World Food Programme
World Health Organization

Goals we are supporting through this initiative