Pakistan among 10 states exposed to natural hazards

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STAFF REPORT KHI: Pakistan is among the 10 countries with the most people exposed to natural hazards, according to data compiled by Verisk Maplecroft, a UK-based risk management company. India also has a billion people at risk, with China, Bangladesh, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Japan.

In all, 1.4 billion people in South Asia are exposed to at least one major natural hazard, from severe storms to flooding and earthquakes, researchers said. “Recent or prolonged conflict can erode societal resilience,” warned Richard Hewston, an analyst with Verisk Maplecroft who led the development of the natural hazards data.

But the list of the countries most vulnerable to disasters – in terms of their ability to prepare for, respond to and recover from them – is topped by African nations, particularly conflict-plagued South Sudan, Burundi and Eritrea.In India and Pakistan, to some extent, there are building codes in place but they are very weakly implemented. You see construction going on, on the sides of landslide-prone mountains or in flood plains.With losses from natural disasters now averaging more than $100 billion a year worldwide, many businesses are looking into ways to minimize the threats to their factories, workers and supply chains, the Verisk Maplecroft report said.

“You can have really (strong) infrastructure at your site and you might be untouched, but if theres no power and no one can get to work, youve got no workers,” Hewston noted. “There needs to be a holistic approach.”


Published in: Volume 07 Issue 13

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