Rohingya

Rohingya funding falling steadily

MNA Editorial Desk: Donor funding to meet the expenses of the humanitarian needs of the Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh is in a declining trend.

The UN agencies along with Dhaka launched an appeal, known as the Joint Response Plan (JRP), for $920.5 million for the year 2019.

But only $636.7 million, 69.2 per cent of the total requirement, was made available by donor countries and organisations.

In 2017 and 2018, the funding was 73 per cent and 72 per cent respectively against requirements.

On the heel of a declining trend in funding for the Rohingya, the UN agencies along with Bangladesh are set to launch an $871-million appeal under the JRP 2020.

The appeal will be launched in Geneva on March 03, said officials of different donor agencies.

About this falling funding, foreign minister Dr AK Abdul Momen told the FE that given the global trend, it is not bad.

Officials of donor agencies also echoed the same on this issue.

But they pointed out that the slash in the requirement for 2020 resulted from a fall in requirement, not from a declining trend.

“A major portion of the funds was allocated for housing the Rohingya in the last two plans,” an official of the Inter Service Coordination Group (ISCG).

“As the fresh influx is almost nil,” he said, “the fund requirement needed to be slashed.”

The ISCG is a platform of donors who are steering humanitarian responses to 0.8 million refugees in Cox’s Bazar who faced massive persecution by security forces.

A financial analysis of the funding in 2019 shows the United States was the top contributor to the JRP 2019 with $246.4 million.

The United Kingdom and Australia donated $98.5 million and $39.6 million respectively.

Japan was the fourth-largest donor with $30.9 million and the European Union the fifth with $30.4 million.

On the other hand, the biggest receiver of the fund was the World Food Programme (WFP). It placed a requirement of $229 million and got $187 million.

The UNHCR was the second top receiver with $176 million followed by the UNICEF with $113 million.

The International Organization for Migration received only $61 million against the required $136 million.

An analysis of the spending shows the highest $191 million was spent on food security.

On the other hand, $38.8 million was spent on education and $38.5 million on health services.

In the JRP 2019, $1.1 million was allocated for emergency telecoms purpose but not a single penny was donated for this purpose.

Another poor funding was found for logistics which got only $0.5 million against the required $4.2 million.

According to officials, donation outside of the JRP was $120 million in 2019.

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