The total cost of the impact and effects of Hurricane Dorian on The Bahamas is estimated at US$3.4 billion, according to the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).
With 67 people confirmed dead and almost three hundred still reported missing, the Washington DC-based agency said the category five system’s impact will last for years.
The cost of the hurricane’s effects was split among damages (72 per cent), losses (21 per cent) and additional costs (seven per cent). It clarified the distinction between the terms as damage being the “monetary estimation of the value of physical assets partially or totally destroyed in each sector” while losses are “a monetary estimation (of) goods that go unproduced and services that go unprovided during a period running from the time the disaster occurs until full recovery and reconstruction.”
Additional costs were explained by the IDB as being outlays required to produce goods and services which represent additional spending by the public and private sectors.
The IDB said the additional costs were being absorbed largely by the private sector at 90 per cent. It continued that the housing sector suffered the highest damages while the tourism sector had the most losses.
Following the devastation of Dorian, the country’s economy is projected to grow at 0.9 per cent in the coming year.
Abaco was the most severely impacted by Dorian with the island having “virtually no viable options for leisure tourism in the near future” said The Bahamas’ Ministry of Tourism and Aviation in a release last month. The island suffered 87 per cent of losses and 76 per cent of the total damages.
The IDB’s representative Daniela Carrera-Marquis said “reconstruction efforts will last many years and will require a well-coordinated participation of public and private sectors, civil society and the international community”, while emphasising that “it is important that those directly affected by the disaster feel the presence and solidarity of the government throughout the difficult process ahead.”
An additional 29,472 people were affected by Dorian through its damage to their homes and assets.