The World Bank is set to approve assistance of $200 million to Pakistan later this month. The money, which shall be approved by the Bank’s executive board, shall help Pakistan combat the locust threat and help people affected by it. $125 million of the $200 million shall be provided by the International Development Association.
The project shall mark the World Bank’s first agricultural initiative in collaboration with the federal government since 2010. After 2010, the 18th Amendment meant that agriculture was the responsibility of the provincial governments. The projects main role is emergency funding to combat the locust threat, as well as provide relief to the affected. The government has predicted a worst-case scenario loss of $15 billion, which could cause severe malnutrition and poverty for the people. The locusts have been highly active and have already caused a lot of devastation. Many have already laid eggs, which could cause problems next year.
The World Bank’s allocation shall boost the country’s fight against locusts, by allowing more aerial spraying and destruction of locusts eggs. The funds shall also be able to financially aid the poor farmers who have been badly struck by the pandemic and the locusts.