In 2020, the World Bank engaged Prepared International (PPI) to support the Western Balkan disaster risk management program by providing an assessment of current emergency preparedness and response (EP&R) capacities. PPI undertook country-specific assessments of EP&R capacity in five Western Balkan nations (Albania,
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Montenegro, and North Macedonia) using the Ready2Respond (R2R) diagnostic methodology. Based on these findings, PPI identified priority EP&R investments at national and entity and district level. This report includes the assessment of the EP&R capacities of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the associated priority investments; a detailed investment report is published separately.
The diagnostic is an objective, data-driven foundation to engage country counterparts in EP&R development projects.
The methodology builds on five core components—legal and institutional accountabilities, information, facilities, equipment, and personnel—which are further divided into 18 criteria, 72 indicators, and 360 attributes. Bosnia and Herzegovina has an overall score of 144 out of 360. Bosnia and Herzegovina is missing important elements of the EP&R system. A relevant factor identified throughout the analysis is the country’s complex political and administrative structure. The country comprise two entities of similar size, the Republic of Srpska and the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Brčko district, with each its own administrative structure.
Of the five components, equipment and personnel are relatively strong, though they still require significant developments; information, facilities, and legal and institutional accountabilities on the other hand are relatively weak.
Within legal and institutional accountabilities, the criterion of financial preparedness is very weak. The availability of funding varies significantly between the Brčko District, the Republic of Srpska, and the Federation, as well as between the different cantons within the Federation. A clear arrangement for budget distribution across all government levels, and especially to the municipalities, is missing, and no shared investment priorities have been defined. Legal accountability in the EP&R system shows important weaknesses. Since legislation is the base component that enables development of the other components, the incompleteness of the legislative system resonates in challenges throughout the EP&R system.
Training centers and an integrated Disaster Management Information System (DMIS) are absent, and community engagement, logistics warehouses and response stations, and shelters and open spaces are weakly developed. Currently there is no reliable warning message system in place for the public. The sirens of earlier days are nonfunctional.
Although equipment received a relatively high quantitative scoring, equipment is vastly insufficient in terms of numbers and requires significantly more investments to be ready to respond to larger-scale impacts. Based on an assessment of equipment by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP 2018a), all relevant institutions in Bosnia and Herzegovina should adopt a well-coordinated investment priority plan for equipment distribution and are advised to secure a structural budget for equipment maintenance and replacement. Overall, the system has low personnel capacity to absorb project investments. Growing the number of first responders, as well as staff working on policy, coordination, and data and information management, is urgently needed to support a maturing organization in the future.
The separate investment plan includes three investment scenarios for a total of US$98,742,000, made up of shortterm investments carried out over the first year (US$1,335,000), medium-term investments carried out over one to three years (US$53,897,000), and long-term investments carried out over more than three years (US$43,510,000).
The investment plan also includes three sets of priorities for investments, as summarized in table 1.