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Commission decision of on the financing of emergency humanitarian actions in South-East Asia from the general budget of the European Union (ECHO/-AS/BUD/2009/03000)

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THE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,

Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union,

Having regard to Council Regulation (EC) No.1257/96 of 20 June 1996 concerning humanitarian aid, and in particular Articles 2(a) and 4 and Article 13 thereof;

Whereas:

(1) On 29 September 2009 Typhoon Ketsana struck central Vietnam, making landfall at 0700 GMT about 80 kilometres south of Vietnam's fourth largest city, Da Nang, bringing winds of up to 150 km/h, flash floods and heavy rain; it then shifted inland and southwards, hitting Cambodia and Laos in the morning of 30 September with very strong winds and heavy rainfall;

(2) The typhoon caused immediate and extensive structural damage, and the consequent torrential rains brought about flooding, landslides and further damage to housing, infrastructure and livelihoods, affecting around 2 million people in the three countries;

(3) In Vietnam the government reported163 dead, 14 missing, 616 injured, 21,429 houses collapsed and 258,306 houses damaged and nearly as many affected by flooding, with a total infrastructure damage estimated at 14,344.29 Billion VND or 807 M$;

(4) In Laos, with wind speeds of up to 140 kilometres per hour and exceptional torrential rains, Typhoon Ketsana ravaged the highly vulnerable southern provinces, directly affecting at least 178,000 people (27,836 households) and destroying 28,500 hectares of harvestable land and significant numbers of livestock;

(5) In Cambodia, Typhoon Ketsana left 21 people dead, 5,336 households relocated, 2,000 homes destroyed, 10,000 families in need of urgent humanitarian relief and more than 28,970 hectares of crops affected, with damage to infrastructure and livelihoods estimated by the Government as high as 41 M$;

(6) The effects of Typhoon Ketsana were critically aggravated by Typhoon Mirinae, which traversed central Vietnam between 2 and 3 November 2009, killing 123 persons, injuring 145 and causing serious damage to livelihoods and infrastructure; initial government assessments estimated the overall damage at more than 5,015 billion VND (about 280 M$);

(7) Recognising that the scale of the needs was far beyond their coping capacities, the authorities of the three countries appealed for help from the international humanitarian community;

(8) Despite an immediate response, the magnitude of the disaster has left large numbers of affected people in need of humanitarian assistance, in sectors such as food and non food items, shelter, water and sanitation, livelihood rehabilitation, health care;

(9) To reach populations in need, humanitarian aid should be channelled through NonGovernmental Organisations (NGOs) and International Organisations including United Nations (UN) agencies. Therefore the European Commission should implement the budget by direct centralized management or by joint management;

(10) Humanitarian aid Actions financed by this Decision should be of a maximum duration of 6 months;

(11) For the purposes of this Decision the South-East Asian countries involved are Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia;

(12) It is estimated that an amount of EUR 7,000,000 from budget article 23 02 01 of the general budget of the European Union is necessary to provide humanitarian assistance to approximately one million beneficiaries, taking into account the available budget, other donors' contributions and other factors. The activities covered by this Decision may be financed in full in accordance with Article 253 of the Implementing Rules of the Financial Regulation;

(13) The present Decision constitutes a financing Decision within the meaning of Article 75 of the Financial Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002, Article 90 of the detailed rules for the implementation of the Financial Regulation determined by Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 2342/2002, and Article 15 of the internal rules on the implementation of the general budget of the European Union;

HAS ADOPTED THIS DECISION:

Article 1

1. In accordance with the objectives and general principles of humanitarian aid, the Commission hereby approves a total amount of EUR 7,000,000 for the financing of emergency humanitarian Actions in South-East Asia from budget article 23 02 01 of the 2009 general budget of the European Union.

2. In accordance with Article 2(a) and 4 of Council Regulation No.1257/96, the principal objective of this Decision is to provide emergency humanitarian aid to the populations affected by typhoons and consequent hazards in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia.

The humanitarian Actions shall be implemented in the pursuance of the following specific objective: - To improve the humanitarian situation of typhoon-affected people in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia by providing life-saving multi-sectoral assistance.

The full amount of this Decision is allocated to this specific objective.

Article 2

1. The period for the implementation of the Actions financed under this Decision shall start on 29 September 2009. Expenditure under this Decision shall be eligible from the same date. The duration of individual humanitarian aid Actions financed under this Decision shall be limited to a maximum of six months.

2. If the implementation of individual actions is suspended owing to force majeure or other exceptional circumstances, the period of suspension shall not be taken into account in the implementing period of the Decision in respect of the Action suspended.

3. In accordance with the contractual provisions ruling the Agreements financed under this Decision, the Commission may consider eligible those costs arising and incurred after the end of the implementing period of the Action which are necessary for its winding-up.

Article 3

1. In accordance with Article 253 of the Implementing Rules and having regard to the urgency of the Action, the availability of other donors and other relevant operational circumstances, funds under this Decision may finance humanitarian Actions in full.

2. Actions supported by this Decision will be implemented either by Non-profit-making organisations which fulfil the eligibility and suitability criteria established in Article 7 of Council Regulation (EC) No.1257/96 or by International organisations.

3. The Commission shall implement the budget:

- either by direct centralised management, with Non-governmental Organisations, - or by joint management with international organisations that are signatories to the Framework Partnership Agreements (FPA) or the EC/UN Financial Administrative Framework Agreement (FAFA) and which were subject to the four pillar assessment in line with Article 53d of the Financial Regulation.

Article 4

This will take effect on the date of its adoption.

Article 5

This Decision is addressed to the delegated authorising officer.

Done at Brussels,

For the Commission
Member of the Commission