According to the UN, earthquake damage in Turkey will exceed $100 billion


Recovery costs ‘will obviously exceed that amount’ after last month’s ‘apocalyptic’ destruction, UN official says

Damage caused by devastating earthquakes in Turkey will exceed $100 billion, a United Nations Development Program (UNDP) official says ahead of a major donor conference next week.

“It is clear from the calculations made so far that the damage figure presented by the government and supported by … international partners would exceed $100 billion,” the UNDP’s Louisa Vinton said at a press conference on Tuesday via a video link from Gaziantep. a Turkish city that has suffered serious damage from the earthquakes.

More than 52,000 people were killed in the February 6 earthquakes in southern Turkey and northwestern Syria. Many were crushed or buried as they slept.

The preliminary damage figure, which according to Vinton only pertains to Turkey, is being used as the basis for a donor conference on March 16 in Brussels to raise money for survivors and reconstruction.

The World Bank previously estimated direct damage in Turkey at $34.2 billion, but said recovery and reconstruction costs will be much higher and losses to Turkey’s gross domestic product from economic disruptions caused by the earthquakes will also increase. contribute to costs.

Apocalyptic scenes

Vinton said the Turkish government, with support from the UNDP, the World Bank and the European Union, had calculated much higher damages.

Once this estimate is completed, it will become the basis for next week’s Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Donor Conference, she said.

Restoration costs, including building improved and more environmentally sustainable infrastructure, “will obviously exceed that amount,” she said.

Vinton described the scenes in Turkey’s hardest hit province of Hatay as “apocalyptic” and said hundreds of thousands of homes have been destroyed. “The needs are huge, but resources are scarce,” she said.

About two million survivors have been moved to temporary accommodation or evacuated from the earthquake-ravaged area, according to Turkish government figures.

About 1.5 million people live in tents, while another 46,000 have moved to container homes. Others live in dormitories and boarding houses, the government said.

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