NASSAU, The Bahamas, Wednesday January 15, 2020 – Governments, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), multilateral institutions, companies and individuals pledged US$1.5 billion in recovery funding and in-kind services at the Hurricane Dorian Private Sector Pledging Conference – just under half the estimated losses and damage the Category 5 hurricane caused when it made landfall in the archipelago four months ago.
More than 300 local and international delegates attended the conference at Baha Mar on Monday, and pledges included: initiatives in homebuilding and repair; educational assistance; renewable energy partnerships; relief aid; grants; direct assistance to storm victims; parks restoration; loans and financing.
“These pledges are an important step in the ongoing reconstruction and rebuilding of areas affected by Hurricane Dorian, so that we may rebuild stronger and with more resilience,” said Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis.
“We are grateful to domestic and international partners, including foreign governments. We look forward to other possible contributions to help in our recovery efforts.”
As a follow up to the conference, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Government will issue a detailed account of the commitments made disaggregated by sectors and stakeholders.
Hurricane Dorian hit Abaco and Grand Bahama in September 2019. With maximum sustained winds of 185 miles per hour, and gusts of 220 miles per hour, Dorian was the strongest storm to hit The Bahamas. It was also the second strongest storm by wind speed recorded in the Atlantic.
There have been 70 confirmed deaths as a result of Hurricane Dorian.
“We thank the donors who pledged at Monday’s conference for their support of the restoration of Abaco and Grand Bahama,” said Katherine Forbes-Smith, Managing Director of the Bahamas Disaster Reconstruction Authority.
“The Authority, as the agency charged with spearheading the reconstruction effort, will work with these local and international partners to ensure that Abaco and Grand Bahama are rebuilt better and stronger. Through these partnerships and assistance we also hope to boost both economies and build back with new, greener technology and resiliency.”