Gilgit : (Mountain Pass) – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) inaugurated a state-of-the-art central storage facility in Gilgit Baltistan, which will be used to store and expedite humanitarian relief stocks during emergencies, ensuring affected populations receive assistance faster.
“This is the seventh facility built in Pakistan as part of a strategic network of storage facilities to further enable the government
and its humanitarian
partners respond faster when disasters strike,” said Finbarr Curran, Representative and Country Director WFP Pakistan.
“Since 2013, the Humanitarian Response Facility (HRF) network has been enabling Provincial Disaster Management Authorities prepare for and respond to emergencies, including the 2013 floods emergency in Punjab and Sindh, earthquake in Baluchistan and earthquake and floods in Chitral,” he added.
The other six HRFs are located in Muzaffargarh, Quetta, Lahore, Hyderabad, Peshawar and Sukkur. An eighth facility is planned in Azad Jammu and Kashmir but has yet to begin construction due to lack of funds. WFP is engaging
partners and looks forward to generous contributions from donor nations to initiate the work.
“WFP’s newly constructed Humanitarian Response Facility will increase the emergency and disaster
response capacity of both government
and humanitarian responders
in Pakistan,” said Hafiz-U-Rehman, Chief Minister
for Gilgit Baltistan.
“This facility will play a pivotal role in rapid and coordinated responses to future emergencies in Gilgit and surrounding areas,” he added.
WFP constructed the Humanitarian Response Facility (HRF) in close collaboration
with the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) and Gilgit Baltistan Disaster Management Authorities
(GBDMA). The facility was constructed with CDN$2.2 million
(US$2.5 million) of generous support
from the governments
of the Australia, Canada, Denmark, Italy, Japan, The Netherlands, and the United States of America (USAID), including CDN$2.2 million (US$1.7 million) from Canada alone. The total covered
storage capacity of this facility
is 960 metric tonnes, two 15x32meter warehouse units and an open storage space of up to 10,000 metric tonnes.