Benin: Reducing Flood Risks in Secondary Cities Through Infrastructure Resilience and Capacity Building

WASHINGTON, September 29, 2022 – The World Bank has approved US$200 million in financing from the International Development Association (IDA) to support Benin’s goal of improving access to climate-resilient infrastructure and urban service delivery to reduce the risk of flooding in secondary cities.

This Program for Results (PforR) operation contributes to the Secondary Cities Rainwater Sanitation Program. It will help the beneficiary communes reduce flood risks and improve the residents’ living conditions by building resilient urban drainage infrastructure and using urban planning tools. It will also help build capacities to implement climate change investment projects, including the capacity to prepare for natural disaster risks. To that end, communes will be encouraged to adopt revised commune-level contingency plans and the State will make the National Disaster Response Fund (FONCAT) more operational. The operation aims to strengthen State-Commune partnerships, enhancing the role and responsibilities of beneficiary communes. It is also focused on the climate change agenda.

“Sanitation in Benin’s secondary cities is crucial to mitigating the disaster risks to which they are constantly exposed. It also offers an opportunity to improve the living environment and boost the local economy and employment,” notes Atou Seck, World Bank Country Manager for Benin. “Most importantly, this program will improve the living conditions of disadvantaged persons, thereby contributing to poverty reduction and climate change mitigation.”

The Secondary Cities Rainwater Sanitation Program complements the Cotonou Stormwater Program to which the World Bank is contributing US$100 million through the Stormwater Management and Urban Resilience Project (PGEPRU). The PGEPRU aims to improve the living conditions of residents by reducing flood risks and strengthening urban resilience management and capacity in the Cotonou urban area.

“This program provides substantial investment in resilient urban infrastructure and related services for flood risk management in our secondary cities,” says Romuald Wadagni, Minister of Economy and Finance, Senior Minister of State. “This financing will also enable the government to support the communes’ climate change adaptation and mitigation initiatives, such as the provision of solar street lighting, the development of urban green spaces, reforestation, improved public spaces, the rehabilitation of embankments, and the construction or rehabilitation of urban roads.”

This operation is aligned with the government’s Action Program for the period 2021-2026 and the World Bank’s Country Partnership Framework (CPF 2018-2023) with Benin. It is also consistent with the goals of the country’s Sustainable Cities and Territories Program and National Adaptation Plan.

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