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World Bank Approves $208 Million Grant for Zambia's Drought Relief

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louis Buyisiwe

Jul 3, 2024

Funding to Aid Over 1.6 Million Households Affected by Severe Drought

The World Bank has approved a $208 million grant for Zambia to address the social and economic impact of the severe drought affecting the southern African nation. The finance ministry announced this development on Tuesday.

Southern Africa is currently experiencing its worst drought in years, a situation exacerbated by the naturally occurring El Niño phenomenon and increased average temperatures due to greenhouse gas emissions.

The drought has severely impacted food production and the livelihoods of millions of people in Zambia, Malawi, and Zimbabwe, leading all three countries to declare a state of disaster.

The World Bank's grant aims to assist Zambia in mitigating the drought's effects by providing additional temporary cash payments to affected households. According to the finance ministry, the support will reach over 1.6 million households across 84 drought-impacted districts over a 12-month period.

In addition to direct financial assistance, the World Bank funding will bolster existing social protection programs, enhancing Zambia's ability to respond effectively to the crisis. This funding follows the International Monetary Fund's (IMF) decision last month to increase its financial support for Zambia from $1.3 billion to $1.7 billion to help the nation manage the drought's impact.

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