Cabinet approves Bt350 billion fund for long-term water management

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BANGKOK, Dec 27 – The cabinet on Tuesday approved a Bt350 billion fund to invest in integrated infrastructure projects for long-term water management to prevent flooding in the future.

Deputy Prime Minister/Commerce Minister Kittirat Na Ranong told reporters after the weekly cabinet meeting that the cabinet has given a green light for the Bt350 billion fund and some projects could immediately be implemented.

Moreover, he said, the cabinet agreed in principle to set up a Bt50 billion insurance fund to help support the insurance system in case such a natural disaster reoccurs in future as some companies fear they do not have reinsurance with foreign carriers.

The deputy premier said the cabinet also approved a master plan for integrated water management covering six areas, including expanded reforestation for ecological balance; building water retention systems such as dams and ponds, town planning management and improved preparedness for more severe natural disaster in the future.

Meanwhile, the Strategic Committee for Reconstruction and Future Development has assigned Minister of Science and Technology Plodprasop Suraswadi to coordinate with experts on aerial photography to gather information on flood risk areas.

The water master committee seeks cooperation with technical organisations such as the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).