The proposed Special Relief Grant of Five Hundred Thousand United States Dollars (US$500,000) is the Bank’s contribution to the efforts to mitigate the effects the oil spill on the shoreline of Mauritius. Indeed, more than 1,000 tons of fuel have leaked into the Indian Ocean from the bulk carrier vessel, MW Wakashio, which ran aground on the south-east coast of Mauritius on 25 July 2020. The oil spill has resulted in health, conservation and economic challenges. The general population remains at ongoing risk of severe illness from petroleum and its associated pollutants. The Grant will be used to acquire critical services and expertise to mitigate the effect of the oil spill. The Bank’s identified areas of intervention are an integral part of the short-medium term actions that have been agreed upon by the Development Partner Group (DPG). DPG has identified the following critical areas of need: (i) Supporting the response teams on site including the National Guard, Special Mobile Forces and other actors; (ii) Environmental, economic and social impact response in order to protect sensitive natural, recreational, and cultural areas and resources; mitigate collateral harm; and facilitate environmental recovery, (iii) forensic and claims to support related legal issues, and (iv) Coordinating and strategic planning. The implementation period for this emergency operation will not exceed 6 months from 15 th September 2020 to 15th March 2021.
The objective is to contribute to the on-going efforts by the Government of Mauritius, Development Partners, the private sector, local and international NGOs and other actors to mitigate the impact the recent oil spill. The Bank’s relief assistance will support the GoM’s clean-up efforts and help stop the ecological and economic damage to the island nation.
SILUNGWE Yappy Gregory
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