A Look at the Haiti Reconstruction Plan
|Tuesday, 30 March 2010 11:50|
"Rebuilding Haiti does not mean returning to the situation that prevailed before the earthquake," according to the 53-page document, the first detailed account of how Haiti and its international backers plan to spend their money over the next 18 months. "It means addressing all these areas of vulnerability, so that the vagaries of nature or natural disasters never again inflict such suffering or cause so much damage and loss."
The document outlines plans to build two more international airports and deep-sea ports to attract commerce and economic development to areas outside Port-au-Prince. Also building 600 kilometers of new road to improve infrastructure and the provision of services.
Some other key aspects of the plan, not mentioned in the Washington Post report are a focus on improving agricultural production, rebuilding social services, and building new "free zones" to attract economic development outside the capital. The document notes the importance of the agricultural sector, which it says employs 50 percent of the workforce, and also because while Haiti used to be mostly self-sufficient in food production they now spend 80 percent of export earnings on food imports. The plan requests funds for increasing the provision of inputs such as seeds and fertilizer, creating irrigation networks, improving rural roads to gain better access to markets, giving favorable credit to farmers, and improving the infrastructure surrounding the slaughter and storage of livestock. The rebuilding of social services focus on urgently getting the education sector on its feet, rebuilding damaged hospitals and increasing access to health services, ensuring food security and access to water, and of course, providing shelter (both temporary and permanent) to those displaced. The development of "free zones" aim to take advantage of the HOPE II trade benefits. The three areas where initial efforts at creating economic development outside the capital will take place are St-Marc, Cap Haïtien and Les Cayes and the surrounding areas.
The plan relies heavily on the private sector, however significant funds are being requested for direct budgetary support. The government plans to implement public-private partnerships on numerous projects and throughout the document encourages the use of local labor, businesses and products to increase employment.
To view the entire action plan, click here (PDF).