Government of the Republic of Mauritius

07/16/2019 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 07/16/2019 04:03

Workshop focuses on Strengthening Disaster Risk Reduction Capacity

GIS - 16 July, 2019: Athree-day regional workshop on 'Strengthening the Disaster Risk Reduction Capacity' opened, today, at Le Labourdonnais Waterfront Hotel, Port-Louis in presence of theMinister of Public Infrastructure and Land Transport, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Regional Integration and International Trade, Mr Nandcoomar Bodha, and the Ambassador of Japan, Mr Yoshiharu Kato.

The workshop, an initiative of the Ministry of Public Infrastructure and Land Transport in collaboration with the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA), the Indian Ocean Commission and the European Union, aims to come up with concrete substantial risk strategies in the economic, physical, social, cultural and environmental aspects of communities and countries. It will focus on several modules, namely Landslide Management; Meteorological Observation, Weather Forecasting and Warming System, Flood Management; and Disaster Management regional platform.

In his address, Minister Bodha said that Government endeavours to enhance disaster preparedness for effective response, identify priority actions and share the good practices of disaster risk reduction with countries in the region. The workshop, he added, will enable stakeholders to get a better understanding of disaster risk reduction trends and frameworks; current and future risk for countries whereby the latter can map the threats and opportunities; the impact of disaster and climate risk; the disaster Risk Reduction Mitigation Plans; and disaster and climate resilient actions, thus helping countries in the region to be better prepared and to develop appropriate mitigation strategies.

The Minister spoke of the importance of geotechnical study which, according to him, is fundamental for a Small Island Developing States like Mauritius. The country, he said, is undergoing major infrastructural development and is highly vulnerable to extreme weather events such as intense cyclones and sea level rise. He recalled that a Geo-Technical Unit has being set up to ensure that land is safe and secured for proper implementation of projects. Mauritius is set to become a small laboratory and model to the neighbouring countries in providing adequate response to disaster in the most sustainable manner, he added. For his part, the Ambassador of Japan, Mr Yoshiharu Kato, recalled the longstanding relationship that Japan and Mauritius share since 1968 adding that as from 1977, JICA fostered its cooperation in Mauritius and that currently it is focusing on 'Climate Change and Disaster Risk Management' programme. He reiterated Japan's wish to further collaborate, strengthen, promote and extend the scope of cooperation that exist between the two countries.

Mr Kato lauded the initiatives of the Mauritian Government to build a more resilient country. He emphasised the need to enhance resilience to climate change, related extreme weather and natural disasters through comprehensive efforts, including developing human resources and infrastructure with advanced technologies, building networks and institutional capacity.

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