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Switzerland ups funding for Haiti

The Swiss government is earmarking SFr36 million ($33.75 million) for reconstruction efforts in Haiti over the next two years.

The money, to be used for rebuilding basic infrastructure, rural development and food security comes on top of the SFr55 million donated by the Swiss in the weeks after an earthquake devastated the Caribbean state.

Around 220,000 people died and a further 300,000 were injured when a 7.0-magnitude quake occurred on January 12.

The foreign ministry said in a statement on Wednesday that Swiss efforts would focus on cities and rural areas southwest of the capital, Port-au-Prince.

It said the reconstruction would be carried out in conformity with anti-earthquake building codes.

Switzerland will also work on projects for supplying drinking water and reconditioning and repairing existing distribution systems.

The activities, to be run by the government’s Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), will be coordinated with the efforts of the international community and the Haitian authorities, the foreign ministry added.

The head of the SDC, Martin Dahinden, will represent Switzerland at an international conference on Haiti to be held at the United Nations in New York on March 31.

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