The United States is conducting a military assistance mission in flood-devastated Pakistan, the US Armed Forces Central Command (CENTCOM) has announced.
“On Thursday, September 1, during a phone call with General Qamar Javed Bajwa, Chief of Staff of the Pakistan Army, General Michael ‘Erik’ Kurilla, Commander of US Central Command, expressed his condolences for the people of Pakistan in the midst of catastrophic flooding,” Col. Joe Buccino, CENTCOM director of communications, said in a statement.
“CENTCOM is sending an assessment team to Islamabad to determine what potential support the DoD can provide to USAID as part of the United States’ aid to the Pakistan flood crisis,” he added.
It comes as Pakistan plans to approach global lenders for monetary assistance to deal with the devastating floods in the country.
The Shehbaz Sharif government will seek help from bodies like the International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank (WB), Asian Development Bank (ADB) and others, ARY NEWS reported.
Global donors will receive a joint report from its disaster management authority, ministries of finance, planning and development on flood losses, the report said, citing sources familiar with the matter.
“An initial loss report has been prepared and it highlighted a $10 billion loss to the economy due to the devastating floods,” the sources quoted by ARY said.
Confirming the development, Pakistani Finance Minister Aisha Ghous Pasha said global lenders will be approached for the rehabilitation of flood-affected areas. “We will complete the flood damage estimates in two days,” she said.
Pakistan is struggling to cope with the devastating flood situation. It is estimated that more than 33 million people have been affected by the floods, with more than 1,000 deaths reported and around 1,500 injured.
More than 6.4 million people in Pakistan are in dire need of humanitarian assistance as the Shehbaz Sharif government struggles to cope with the unprecedented situation.
The cash-strapped country is mulling another emergency loan days after it managed to secure the much-needed bailout package from the IMF to avert an impending default.
Estimates suggest the devastating floods in Pakistan may have caused nearly 2.5 trillion Pakistani rupees in losses, The Express Tribune newspaper reported. The initial assessment indicates that the economic growth rate may slow to just 2% in the current fiscal year.
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