The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has urged Asian countries to develop disaster risk financing packages to better cope with natural catastrophes.

In the Asian Economic Integration Monitor report released on April 22, ADB revealed that the annual financial costs for Asia from natural disasters amount to 53 billion USD, which could wipe out gains from economic growth in many economies.

Over the past four decades, direct physical losses from disasters in the region significantly outpaced growth in gross domestic product, it says.

Despite this fact, only 7.6 percent of economic losses from natural catastrophes in Asia were insured in 2013, the bank added.

Therefore, ADB says regional cooperation, along with better and more effective national policies including financial risk management, is critical.

It also suggests the regional countries learn from the experience of Caribbean countries in the field.-VNA