Brussels, 10 September 2002 - The European Commission has approved a total amount of €1,3 million for humanitarian aid operations for the people of Southern Peru and the department of Potosi in Bolivia affected by unusual freezing weather in July 2002. The funds, channeled through the Humanitarian Aid Office (ECHO), will be used to support affected families in Peru and Bolivia by improving their shelter and preserving their livestock as well as enhancing people capacity to effectively respond to natural disasters.
The funds allocated by the EC are necessary to provide humanitarian assistance to about 22,000 people affected by snowstorms and extreme low temperatures in Bolivia and Peru. The main component of this humanitarian aid package (€1 million) will be allocated to Peru, while the remaining €300,000 will be provided for Bolivia. The funding will cover the rehabilitation of approximately 500 dwellings in Peru, the care of approximately 50,000 livestock in Peru and Bolivia and the training in disaster preparedness.
ECHO is also present in other South American countries where natural catastrophes are recurrent, in particular floods, landslides, droughts, volcanic eruptions and earthquakes. Humanitarian aid to Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, Venezuela and Paraguay amounts to over €19 million since 1999.