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Flood: Pakistan gets over $9bn pledge

Donors have pledged more than $9bn (£7.4bn) to help Pakistan recover from the devastating floods that hit the country last year.

This amounts to more than half of the estimated $16.3bn Pakistan needs to recover from the disaster.

Last year’s floods killed at least 1,700 people, displaced eight million more and destroyed infrastructure.

The pledges come as Pakistan continues negotiations over the next instalment of an international bailout.

Pakistan’s minister of state for foreign affairs Hina Rabbani Khar said “Today has truly been a day which gives us great hope” this is at a climate conference held with the United Nations (UN) in Geneva.

“I think the message from the world is clear: the world will stand by those who go through any national calamity,” she added.

The Islamic Development Bank, the World Bank and Saudi Arabia were some of the biggest donors.

The European Union, the US, China and France also made contributions.

This came after UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres called for major investments to help Pakistan recover from what he called a “climate disaster of monumental scale”.

While on the sidelines of the conference Pakistan reiterated its commitment to completing a bailout programme with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

It came as the IMF is yet to approve the release of $1.1bn which was originally due to be made in November of last year.

The nation of which has a population of 220 million people have been struggling for years to stabilise its economy.

Last week the government ordered shopping centres and markets to close early every day to help save electricity.

As it stands, Pakistan generates most of its power using imported fossil fuels.

Global energy prices jumped last year, putting further pressure on the country’s already dwindling finances.

The country needs foreign currency to pay for its energy.

Writing by Tersoo Nicholas