STAFF REPORT IBD: Contaminated drinking water and insufficient sanitation facilities cost the national kitty Rs 343 billion annually in Pakistan in terms of ailment and environmental degradation, experts at a donors debriefing session recently organized by the Ministry of Climate Change revealed.

They said that the financial losses related to poor water quality and insufficient sanitation that stood at Rs 112 in 2006 had increased to Rs 343 billion annually making four per cent of the GDP.

In his remarks, Secretary Climate Change Mahmood Alam explained the critical situation and called upon the donors to help Pakistan execute water and sanitation related projects to meet the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). And now these losses have risen to Rs 343 billion that incur on curing the water borne diseases like diarrhea, hepatitis, malaria and infant mortality caused by lack of proper water and sanitation system.

Alam said that Pakistan remains committed to enhance sectoral allocation by one per cent of the overall PRSP by 2015 to meet 2013-15 resource gap of US$ 750 million and mobilize external assistance for an additional US$ 200 million annually to meet MDGs.

He informed the representatives of the donors like World Bank, UN agencies and private sector organizations that the debriefing was meant for soliciting support from the donors in follow-up of their commitments made at high level meeting to facilitate Pakistan meet the MDGs.

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