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WB CEO: Not a minute to lose, act to accelerate adaptation

  • Published at 12:41 am July 11th, 2019
World Bank CEO Kristalina Georgieva-Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina PID
World Bank CEO Kristalina Georgieva calls on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday, July 10, 2019 PID

She thanked the prime minister for leading the world on adaptation methods

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of World Bank, Kristalina Georgieva, has said there is not a moment to lose, and actions must be taken to accelerate adaptation for protecting the loss of lives and livelihoods.

"Time isn't our friend. We have not a minute to lose. We ought to accelerate adaptation. This is what our commission is determined to do," she said while addressing the inaugural session of the 'Dhaka Meeting of the Global Commission on Adaptation' at Hotel Intercontinental on Wednesday. 

Appreciating Bangladesh's achievements since its independence, the World Bank CEO said the country has proven that development is the best resilience builder, reports UNB.

She thanked the prime minister for leading the world on adaptation.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the event. Marshall Island President Dr Hilda Heine, chair of the Commission and former UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen and Environment, Forests and Climate Change Minister Md Shahab Uddin also spoke on the occasion.

Georgieva said she has admired the remarkable success since 1972, noting that per capita income has gone up from $100 to $1,500, and Bangladesh is well on track to bring poverty rate to less than 3% by 2030.

"It's a country with high population density. It has managed to bring down the population growth by empowering women, bringing girls to schools and creating jobs," she said.

Georgieva said she was very impressed by what Bangladesh has demonstrated to the rest of the world.  Despite its own problems, it can show compassion to those who are fleeing for their lives, like the Rohingyas.

"I very humbly want to say thank you to you (Sheikh Hasina). You are an example for the world to follow," she said addressing the prime minister. 

Justifying the convening of the meeting in Dhaka, Georgieva said it is the epicentre of climate change risks, and also the centre for showing how actions can be taken to tackle them. 

The economy of Bangladesh stands most at risk due to climate change, as it ranked number one in the climate change vulnerability index in 2014.

"But we've seen incredible ingenuity in dealing with climate change in this country," she said.

As an example of smart adaptation measures, Georgieva cited how communities of Bangladesh switched from breeding chickens to ducks, as chickens die when floods come, but ducks swim. "We at the World Bank are very proud to be your partner." 

On Tuesday, the World Bank CEO said Bangladesh has shown the world what can be done through disaster preparedness and adaptation despite being extremely vulnerable to climate change.