Announcements ESCAP-India partnership to strengthen disaster early warning systems in Asia-Pacific

ESCAP-India partnership to strengthen disaster early warning systems in Asia-Pacific

Embassy of India

Press Release

ESCAP-India partnership to strengthen disaster early warning systems in Asia-Pacific

India and the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) have signed a US$ 1 million partnership to support disaster risk management in the region, with a key focus on strengthening early warning systems for coastal hazards including tsunamis, coastal zone flooding, storm surges and tropical cyclones.

India’s contribution to the ESCAP Multi-Donor Trust Fund for Tsunami, Disaster and Climate Preparedness in Indian Ocean and Southeast Asian Countries, will help to ensure that vulnerable communities receive the timely warning information required to save lives and livelihoods in disasters.

At a signing ceremony in Bangkok today, United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Secretary of ESCAP Dr. Shamshad Akhtar highlighted the Government of India’s ongoing commitment to supporting disaster risk management in Asia and the Pacific.

“Early warning is a particularly promising area of collaboration for the Government of India and ESCAP as India is a leader in this field,” said Dr. Akhtar. “The rest of the region can benefit tremendously from India’s resources, skills and expertise.”

The contribution to the Trust Fund is part of a series of steps taken by the Government of India to support regional early warning systems. India is a Regional Service Provider for the Indian Ocean Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System (IOTWS) and an active member of the ESCAP/World Meteorological Organization Panel on Tropical Cyclones. It also hosts a Regional Specialized Meteorological Center in New Delhi and chairs the Council of the Regional Integrated Multi-Hazard Early Warning System for Africa and Asia (RIMES).

India’s Ambassador to Thailand and Permanent Representative to UNESCAP, Harsh VardhanShringla underlined India’s experience, which has revealed that “investments in Early Warning Systems yield rich dividend in saving lives”. He reiterated India’s strong commitment to regional, sub-regional and south-south cooperation in multi-hazard early warning and disaster risk management and expressed confidence that “India’s contribution will assist multilateral efforts to better manage disaster risk through early warning systems in the Asia-Pacific area”.

Created in 2005 following the devastation caused by the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami, the Trust Fund supports activities that build resilience through strengthened early warning systems for coastal hazards. The Trust Fund has a strong record in supporting innovative approaches based on regional and South-South cooperation and India’s contribution will give these efforts a major boost.

India and ESCAP enjoy a longstanding relationship through India’s voluntary contributions to ESCAP’s regional institutions and India’s support for capacity development projects promoting the transfer of technology. India hosts the ESCAP Asia and Pacific Centre for Transfer of Technology, along with the Subregional Office for South and South-West Asia.


(Bangkok – 21 September 2015)