Close to 300 local and international delegates, including representatives of governments, multilateral agencies and financial institutions will convene at the Baha Mar Convention Centre on January 13 for the widely anticipated Hurricane Dorian Pledging Conference, to mobilize recovery financing.
The Bahamas’ reconstruction and recovery efforts are expected to get a boost at the event which is organized by the government of The Bahamas in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
Heading the list of dignitaries is Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis who will be joined by other representatives of government; Luis Felipe López-Calva, United Nations assistant secretary general and UNDP’s regional director for the Latin American and Caribbean region; Denise E Antonio, UNDP resident representative for The Bahamas, Jamaica, Belize, Bermuda, Cayman Islands and Turks and Caicos Islands. There will also be representation from the diplomatic corps and international organizations.
A number of high-level commitments consistent with government’s stated priorities are expected. Representation has been confirmed from several governments; financial institutions such as the Caribbean Development Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB); several United Nations agencies, funds and programs, charitable organizations and philanthropic individuals.
In addition to a segment devoted to pledging statements, the conference will also feature presentations on a specially tailored fund that will be used to manage finances for the reconstruction effort, as well as a panel discussion on recovery and resilience, and building back better.
There will also be a presentation on government’s recovery priorities and several high-level sector projects, geared towards rebuilding a stronger, more resilient Bahamas.
Dorian, a Category 5 hurricane hit the islands of Abaco and Grand Bahama in September 2019 and left widespread devastation estimated at $3.4 billion, according to assessments conducted by the Inter-American Development Bank and the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean.
The pledge conference aims to galvanize support from the private sector, philanthropic individuals, other governments and donors who have expressed interest in assisting with the recovery.
UNDP is on record as committing its support for government’s financial mobilization efforts because of the country’s limited access to Official Development Assistance and concessional financing due to its classification as a high-income country.