India on Friday signed a USD 65.5 million loan agreement with Asian Development Bank (ADB) to continue interventions to check coastal erosion in Karnataka.
The financing will be used to address the immediate coastal protection needs and for strengthening institutional capacity of Karnataka's Public Works, Ports and Inland Water Transport Department.
Finance ministry joint secretary Sameer Kumar Khare signed the loan agreement on behalf of India while Kenichi Yokoyama, Country Director of ADB's India Resident Mission, signed the agreement for ADB.
"Coastal area development is one of the priority sectors for Government of India. The programme has introduced innovative techniques for managing coastal erosion that will ultimately benefit local communities, and would also help address concerns pertaining to the climate change," Khare said.
"The investment programme has already demonstrated the benefit of adoption of softer options such as artificial reefs, beach nourishments, and dune management for coastal protection. The project will consist of eight coastal protection sub-projects to address the issues of medium to severe coastal erosion resulting in protection of about 54 km of coastline in Karnataka," said Kenichi Yokoyama.
Karnataka's coast supports the state's major economic sectors, which include fisheries, agriculture, tourism, ports and other major transport and communication sectors.
Coastal erosion in the state, where the project is focused, poses a high risk to human well-being, economic development, and ecological integrity through loss of land, infrastructure, and business opportunities.