The Philippine Government has announced a strategic plan for the rehabilitation in central Philippines ravaged early November by super typhoon Haiyan, locally known as Yolanda.

The plan will focus on housing, infrastructure, agriculture, industry, the delivery of health and education during the process of reconstruction, said President Benigno Aquino at a December 18 ceremony to launch the strategic plan of the Reconstruction Assistance on Yolanda (RAY).

He called for international assistance as well as private sectors’ commitments to help the country rebuild infrastructure so that it is able to withstand the onslaught of disasters and negative impacts by climate change.

According to the Philippine National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), the country needs 361 billion pesos (8.17 billion USD) for the recovery and reconstruction of typhoon-hit areas until 2017.

The same day, the Philippine government asked the US to temporarily suspend the collection of duties for goods produced from typhoon-affected areas, including garments.

Typhoon Haiyan made landfall on central Philippines on November 8, killing nearly 6,000 people and leaving 2,000 others missing. Total damage caused by the storm was estimated at 12.9 billion USD.-VNA