Natural Disasters

Earthquake victims get gravity-fed water supply in Papua New Guinea

A ILO-Japan funded partnership infrastructure project is helping earthquake-affected communities in the Nipa district to access clean drinking water.

News | 22 November 2019
Community leaders of Nipa district sign a MOU to protect and safeguard the water supply project.
Port Moresby (ILO NEWS) A gravity-fed water supply project is helping earthquake-affected communities in the Nipa district of the Southern Highlands access clean water for drinking. Following the 7.5 magnitude earthquake in 2018, the International Labour Organization (ILO) with support from the Japanese government, responded to the community’s need.

The project which was implemented at a cost of US$120,000 utilizes ILO’s employment-intensive infrastructure development model; whereby local labour and resources were used. Essentially, the ILO/Japan assistance through this project will enable the affected people of Nipa district to earn an income through use of local labour and resources; whilst at the same time promote peace and resilience through this development. A clean and safe drinking water for all would mean better hygiene and good health for the entire community and the neighbourhood in the long run.

The  ILO-Japan project is the first-ever infrastructure project in Papua New Guinea. Over 1,000 workers and almost 6,000 households in earthquake-affected communities will benefit from the economic activity entailed by this project. The project was designed to integrate environmental standards and conservation measures promoting green jobs and providing immediate income.

The project has also contribute towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), specifically Goal 6 on clean water and sanitation, and Goal 8 on decent work and economic growth starting from the rural sector.

Over the years, the ILO has developed and applied practical tools in marginalized communities to generate jobs, improve living conditions, transfer skills and enable access to livelihood opportunities.

This year, the ILO also marks 100 years of advancing social justice and promoting decent work. It will build on its vast experience in water supply infrastructure development not only in the Southern Highlands but replicate in several other provinces.

The ILO-Japan project will complement other peace and development projects undertaken by other development partners and the United Nations system in the country.

Japan is a key partner of the ILO in the promotion of social justice and decent work, especially in the Asia and the Pacific region. “This project is the first to be implemented in Papua New Guinea through this partnership; hence there is appetite for much bigger engagements into the future” said Mr. Kugam –the ILO National Coordinator.