Financial Protection of Public Assets: A Primer for Public Officials
Disasters caused by natural hazards can lead to widespread damage and losses to infrastructure assets and disrupt the provision of their services. These disruptions impede the smooth functioning of economies and societies, and are estimated to cost households and firms more than US$400 billion annually across low- and middle-income countries. Damages to power generation and distribution and to transport infrastructure alone cost about US$18 billion a year in low- and middle-income countries.
“Public asset” is a term used to describe assets across a wider range of services and functions of government, including education, administration, and health. Often, this term expands to include critical infrastructure and other assets owned through public-private partnerships. Many countries, particularly those in Southeast Asia, have made significant advances in establishing policies and measures toward improved financial protection of public assets.