Parliament approves €17.7 million in EU aid after intense floods in Latvia

15-11-2018, 10:32 | Comments: 0
MEPs have approved €17,730,519 in EU aid to repair damage caused by intense floods in Latvia in the summer and autumn of 2017, in a vote on Tuesday.

The aid comes from the EU Solidarity Fund (EUSF). The report by Inese Vaidere (EPP, LV) recommending the swift approval of the decision was approved by 402 votes to 25, with 7 abstentions.

During August, September and October 2017, Latvia was affected by a long-lasting period of intense rainfall leading to soil being saturated and subsequent flooding throughout the country, particularly in the Latgale region and surrounding territories. The flood destroyed crops and caused widespread damage to water courses, the drainage system, connected water treatment installations as well as road and railway infrastructure.

The aid is intended to help restore essential infrastructure, reimburse the cost of emergency measures and cover the costs of some of the clean-up operations.

Next steps

The aid should be available on the ground shortly, before the end of the year.

Background

The European Union Solidarity Fund (EUSF) was set up to respond to major natural disasters and express European solidarity to disaster-stricken regions within Europe. The Fund was created as a reaction to the severe floods in Central Europe in the summer of 2002. Since then, it has been used for 80 disasters covering a range of different catastrophic events including floods, forest fires, earthquakes, storms and drought. 24 different European countries have been supported so far for an amount of over €5 billion.

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