Climate compensation

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SPEAKING at the COP27 Climate Conference, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif forcefully presented Pakistan’s case saying the country would need debt relief and compensation for climate damage as it recovers from catastrophic floods that cost the country over $30 billion.

At a news conference in Sharmul Sheikh, the UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres once again strongly supported Pakistan when he proposed debt relief and concessional financing for the country.

Indeed, the world community will have to come forward and that too in a big manner to help the millions of displaced families in Pakistan.

The winter season has set in but the affected families are still without any shelter and livelihood.

The situation has further complicated due to the breakout of water borne diseases in areas where water is still standing.

Both the federal and provincial governments on their part have done their best to extend a helping hand to the flood victims but the tragedy is huge – something which our country cannot handle single handedly.

Responsibility rests with the industrialized nations to extend maximum financial assistance to Pakistan in the form of grants to cope with this challenge.

So far, regardless of flash appeal by the United Nations, we believe the re-sponse has not been as good as it should have been.

Words of sympathies are not enough to heal the wounds of people rather practical actions are required on the ground to bring normalcy back in their life.

The donor conference likely to be held soon should come up with strong and concrete pledges which also need to be materialized at the earliest so that our government could immediately embark upon the rehabilitation of the flood affected people and reconstruction of damaged infrastructure in a manner that is resilient to future climate disasters.

There is also dire need now to mobilize loss and damage funds for disaster-hit nations and the COP 27 should make headway in this regard by establishing some sort of institutional framework, as has also been suggested by the UN Secretary General.

All nations will have to stand up and show commitment to deal with the most pressing issue of climate change as it is the matter of the future of our coming generations.

 

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