The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Bangladesh government on Wednesday signed an agreement for $41.4 million in grant to help improve infrastructure and manage the basic needs of displaced Rohingyas from Myanmar sheltered in Cox's Bazar in Bangladesh.
The additional assistance forms the second phase of the ADB's ongoing Emergency Assistance Project worth $100 million in grant approved in 2018.
Ms Fatima Yasmin, secretary of Economic Relations Division, and Edimon Ginting, country director of ADB, signed the agreement on behalf of Bangladesh and ADB, respectively, said a press release from ADB.
"The assistance will scale up the ongoing project by addressing the unmet basic and urgent needs identified for ADB assistance in 2018 but which remained unfunded due to grant funding constraints," said ADB Country Director for Bangladesh Edimon Ginting.
"Disaster shelter centres, health facilities, improved water supply and sanitation, and better waste management that will be provided with ADB assistance, will reduce disaster risks, strengthen the resilience against Covid-19, and serve basic human needs of the camp population until their repatriation."
The new assistance will build 200 water and sanitation facilities, three solid waste management facilities, and establish a piped water supply system at Ukhiya.
It will, among others, upgrade four health care facilities for severe respiratory infection, expand six primary health care and diagnostic centres in Teknaf, improve skills of health care workers in Cox's Bazar district, and construct a multipurpose disaster-resilient isolation centre to help with the Covid-19 response.
To strengthen disaster resilience and help protect displaced persons, six school-cum-cyclone shelters in local primary schools, and one multipurpose cyclone shelter, which will also function as a Covid-19 isolation center, will be constructed. About 13 km of rural access roads leading to the camp facilities will be upgraded too.
In addition to the new grant assistance, an agreement was also signed Wednesday for a $30 million concessional loan to rehabilitate a 30.76 km section of National Highway-1 to improve the transportation of relief and essential goods between Teknaf and Cox's Bazar.
ADB support has so far provided clean drinking water, bathing facilities, food distribution centres, and disaster shelters benefitting over 1.2 million people in the camps and host communities. Safety in the camps also improved through solar streetlamps, and lightning arresters. Roads, walkways, and bridges inside the camps improved the overall management of the camps as well as food distribution and other services.