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Activity Report

20-24 October 2014 (Bangkok, Thailand)

IMG_9296.JPGADRC participated in the 9th Integrated Workshop of the Typhoon Committee which was jointly organized by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP), the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Typhoon Committee Secretariat on 20-24 October 2014. The more than 80 participants who attended the meeting included representatives from China, D.P.R. Korea, Japan, Lao, Malaysia, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Thailand, US, Viet Nam, Hong Kong and Macao Special Administrative Regions, as well as representatives of the organizing institutions.

The participants discussed their approaches of "Synergized, Integrated, Collaborative Standard Operating Procedures Strategies to Improve Early Warning System for Coastal Multi-hazards" which was the main theme of the meeting. And reports were given on the typhoon damage sustained in each country, as well as on the current year's activities. These included the project on Synergized Standard Operating Procedures for Coastal Multi-hazards Early Warning System (SSOP), in which ADRC is involved.

For the Disaster Risk Reduction Working Group, it was also considered that the participation in the "UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction" at Sendai, Japan on March 2015 as the Typhoon Committee.

The Typhoon Committee has two other working groups covering meteorology and hydrology, in addition to the working group on disaster risk reduction. This time, the three working group meetings were held together as an integrated event.

For more information, visit the Typhoon Committee website:

(2014/10/28 19:40)


11-18 October 2014 (Armenia)

IMG_9230.JPGSince 2009, ADRC has been conducting DRR Policy Peer Reviews to help develop the DRR capacity of ADRC-member countries through the promotion of information sharing and through the strengthening of relationships among member countries.

The target project selected for review this year, the sixth since the Peer Review process was launched, is a project aimed at Seismic Safety Capacity Building of nursing homes and orphanages in the northern part of Armenia. After the country report was submitted, a reviewer team comprised of Dr. Kazuyoshi Ohnishi (Associate Professor, Graduate School of Engineering, Kobe University, Japan), Dr. Linsheng Gu (Professor and Executive Director, Institute for Disaster Management and Reconstruction (IDMR), Sichuan University - Hong Kong Polytechnic University, China) and Mr. Junji Moriwaki (ADRC Researcher) visited Armenia to conduct interviews.

The team visited the National Survey for Seismic Protection Agency, which is involved in DRR activities, to examine its DRR development efforts in Armenia. The team then conducted inspection of nursing homes and orphanages, after which it prepared a draft report of its survey results with all its findings (i.e. "The map of evacuation routes and places is posted on the wall" "The orphanage sets a rule that elder students should assist younger pupils in disaster", etc.) and recommendations (i.e. "Need to replace the furniture not to impede evacuation route" "Cooperation with local community regularly for assuming emergency situations", etc.). A workshop was also held to gather opinions and comments used in finalizing the report as well as to share good DRR practices from Japan and China with local participants. This proved to be a very good opportunity for participants to share information and ideas with one another.

This project aims to develop a mutual learning process among ADRC-member countries, rejecting conventional models of one-way learning. After its survey mission ends, the reviewer team compiles a survey report, which it sends to the countries examined as well as to other ADRC member countries, so as to enhance cross-fertilization.

ADRC would like to express its sincerest gratitude to all of those who have made such important contributions to this project.

                                          (2014/10/27 19:40)

10-12 September 2014 (Washington D.C., USA)


Asian Disaster Reduction Center (ADRC), in cooperation with the International Recovery Platform (IRP), organized a number of the technical sessions at the second World Reconstruction Conference (WRC 2) in Washington D.C., 10-12 September 2014. Hosted by the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR), a member of IRP, the conference was aimed at building consensus on resilient recovery as an imperative for sustainable development and poverty reduction. It also discussed innovative approaches for post-disaster recovery and reconstruction to further inform the deliberation of Post-2015 Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction.
At the opening, Dr. Jim Yong Kim, President of the World Bank, emphasized the importance of including disaster risk reduction in building back better disaster recovery principles, focusing specifically on developing countries at high risk. In that regard, he expected the conference to deliberate on a way forward on disaster recovery, particularly in fragile contexts, and highlight the role of recovery in poverty reduction and shared prosperity.
The three IRP/ADRC technical sessions contributed greatly in the discussions to achieve the objectives of the conference through the recommendations from the panelists and participants. In Session 1: Making Post-Disaster Recovery Efficient and Effective: Elements of Good Recovery for Articulation in Post-2015 Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, the recommendations to aid governments in facilitating effective recovery are as follow: (i) having stable fund for recovery; (ii) using scientific information to support policy decisions; and (iii) collaborative efforts among all stakeholders, including the private sector.
In Session 8: Ten Years after Tsunami: A Retrospective, the recommendations to improve recovery operations include the following: (i) ensuring speed and focus on recovery of livelihoods; (ii) creating greater participation of community in recovery planning and implementation processes; (iii) linking recovery from tsunami to long-term development; and (iv) adopting simple measures of impacts of tsunami recovery programs. 
In Session 16: Role of Private Sector in Recovery: The Case for Private Sector Engagement in Recovery for Post-2015 Framework for DRR, emphasized that private sector is a key factor in recovery because they understand the context and have the expertise to solve problems. This session recommended that private sector can be effectively engaged through the following actions: (i) providing opportunity for private sector to invest in recovery as means of sustaining businesses; (ii) promoting pre-contract agreements and  pre-disaster recovery planning; and (iii) building long-term and sustainable relationship between public and private sector.
Included in the conference was the 15th Steering Committee meeting of IRP which mainly discussed its future role in the implementation of Post-2015 Framework for DRR as well as IRP's preparations for the International Recovery Forum in January 2015 in Kobe and World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction in March 2015 in Sendai. One potential future role of IRP is to serve as a global mechanism for coordinating recovery policies and recovery processes. 
Speakers at the closing plenary imparted key actions to move forward. Ms. Margareta Wahlstrom, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Disaster Risk Reduction UNISDR, outlined the following recommendations:  (i) bridging the segregation gap between climate change adaptation (CCA) and disaster risk reduction (DRR) that are exhibited in research initiatives and in disaster preparedness, response, and recovery planning; (ii) reconciling response and recovery approaches for hazards and conflicts; (iii) recognizing of the critical role of local governments and communities in DRR and recovery by encouraging national governments to motivate and support local responses; and (iv) promoting collaboration among multi-stakeholders in recognition of the complexity of recovery process.
Ms. Rachel Kyte, Vice President and Special Envoy for Climate Change, World Bank Group, indicated that: (i) resilience is all about people: the more we understand about people the more we understand about communities and their dynamics; (ii) it's not just about money: while actors need to make sure that there are finances to properly respond, governments must have the capacity to allocate, disperse, and protect funds; (iii) initiatives and messages should be "practical and simple"; and (iv) foster effective partnerships to reduce the burden.
Mr. Saber Hossain Chowdhury, Member of Parliament, People's Republic of Bangladesh, delivered the Conference Statement: Strengthen Resilient Recovery and Reconstruction in the Post-2015 Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction aimed at advancing consensus, national and internationally, on the critical role of resilient recovery for sustainable development and poverty reduction. He ended his presentation saying, "If you fail to plan, you plan to fail". 
The WRC2 will inform the next round of deliberations at the second Preparations Committee meeting in November in Geneva leading to the World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction in March 2015 in Sendai, Japan where the Post-2015 Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction will be adopted.

For more information, please contact IRP Recovery Expert, Mr. Potutan ( 

(2014/9/26 14:40)

23-25 September 2014 (Bangkok, Thailand)

ADRC participated in the meeting named above, which was organized by the United Nations Economical and Social Commission and the Pacific (UNESCAP) and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), from 23 to 25 September 2014 in Bangkok, Thailand. About 80 participants attended the meeting including representatives of relevant agencies, businesses, and academic institutions in the Asia-Pacific region. The meeting primarily covered the following topics.
•Natural disaster risk reduction
•Humanitarian and community support for disaster risk reduction and management
•Contributions of space technology and GIS for disaster risk reduction and management
•Use of space technology and GIS for information management during disasters
•Use of space technology and GIS for economic and business resilience
•Integration of space technology and GIS for disaster warnings and evacuation activities
•Use of space technology and GIS for promoting regional collaboration

ADRC gave a presentation on its activities within the Sentinel Asia program and on the use of satellites within the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA).

(2014/09/30 18:30)


(18-19 September 2014, Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic)

ADRC participated in the Second Regional Ministerial Conference of Disaster Management Authorities in Central Asia under the "Central Asia plus Japan" Dialogue held in Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic on 18-19 September 2014. This conference, organized by the government of Japan, the Ministry of Emergency Situations of the Kyrgyz Republic, and UNDP Kyrgyzstan, aimed to discuss the possible creation of a high level forum for disaster management authorities involved in DRR under the "Central Asia plus Japan" Dialogue. The participants included representatives of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan, as well as the Embassy of Japan in the Kyrgyz Republic, JICA, and other international organizations.
     During the conference, participants discussed the most urgent DRR issues facing the region as well as future opportunities for cooperation. ADRC presented information on the outcomes of DRR programs conducted in various Central Asian countries, and identified needs and areas for future DRR cooperation in the region.
     At the end of the two-day conference, the participants agreed to establish and regularly convene a forum for the heads of the disaster management authorities in Central Asia for discussing efforts to strengthen regional cooperation in reducing, preventing, and responding to disaster risks. In addition, an expert level working group of disaster management authorities in Central Asia will be established to support this forum.

(2014/09/18 16:50)


23-30 August 2014 (Chile)

ADRC has been a participating research institution in the SATREPS Chile Project since 2013. At the end of August 2014, ADRC dispatched staff members to research tsunami disaster awareness among the residents of Iquique, Chile. This research was carried out using in-person meetings and questionnaires. Since Iquique experienced a large-scale earthquake in April 2014, the tsunami disaster awareness of local residents exceeded our expectations. ADRC would like to continue conducting research on disaster risk reduction so that its findings can be applied in both Chile and Japan.

(2014/09/14 18:30)


14 August 2014 (Manila, Philippines)

The ASEAN High-Level Conference on Assistance for the Recovery of Yolanda-Affected Areas (ARYA), hosted by the Government of the Philippines, co-hosted by the ASEAN, was held in Manila, Philippines on 14 August 2014.  As a cooperation of this conference, the ADRC sent one representative from IRP secretariat to attend. The conference's over 200 participants included government officials from ASEAN member countries, disaster managers across the Philippines and experts from international organizations.
During his statement in plenary session titled "Role of Asian Disaster Reduction Center (ADRC) towards Recovery of Typhoon Yolanda -What we have done so far, and what we can do now and on", Mr. Shingo Kouchi, ADRC Senior Expert as well as IRP Senior Recovery Expert, highly appreciated every effort made by the Government and people of the Philippine since the occurrence of the disaster. Similar to Japan's situation, it has been widely recognized in the Philippines that Government and people need to promote multi-stakeholder approach towards effective disaster mitigation/prevention and reconstruction/recovery. Mr. Kouchi also stressed that ADRC and IRP have been working closely with the Office of Civil Defense (OCD) and many stakeholders in the Philippines, and ADRC/IRP will seek possibilities of providing technical assistance for the Philippines' recovery and rehabilitation efforts of Yolanda-affected communities to enhance current efforts of the government.
With the concept of "Building Back Better than Before", ADRC would like to make continuous efforts for realization of disaster-resilient society and communities across the Asian region, by sharing Japanese technologies, experiences, and lessons learned from the past. For more information, please contact Kouchi (

(2014/08/29 14:50)

30 June to 2 July 2014 (Toulouse, France)

ADRC participated in the Toulouse Space Show held in Toulouse, France on 30 June to 2 July 2014. This show was organized by the Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales (CNES), and featured displays and introductions to activities by space-related organizations and companies from across Europe. Meetings were held to discuss the effective use of space technologies in various fields such as telecommunications and policymaking. ADRC participated in a roundtable discussion on "Crisis Management and Mitigation: Anticipating, Managing, and Rebuilding" and shared good practices in the use of space technologies during the Great East Japan Earthquake. Other organizations including the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) and the German Aerospace Center (DLR) also gave presentations on their latest activities in this field and explained the need for cooperative structures that extend beyond national and regional boundaries.

(2014/07/22 18:30)

22-27 June 2014 (Bangkok, Thailand)

6AMCDRR1.JPG   On occasion of the Sixth Asian Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (6AMCDRR), a biennial conference in Asia to ensure political and stakeholder's commitment towards disaster risk reduction implementation, the International Recovery Platform (IRP) organized a side event
"Investing in Recovery for Resilience: Articulating Recovery in HFA2" was organized on June 24, 2014 at Lotus 4, Bangkok Convention Center at Centara Grand.  Following the opening and special remarks by Mr. Kaoru Saito, Director of Cabinet Office, Japan, with panelists coming from diverse backgrounds, including Atty. Violeta Seva of Makati City (Philippines), Prof. Santosh Kumar of SAARC Disaster Management Center (SDMC), Mr. Tadao Hasue and Ms. Kumi Onuma of Development Bank of Japan (DBJ), and Ms. Ana Cristina Thorlund of International Recovery Platform (IRP), past experiences were highlighted to draw insights. The moderator Mr. Saber Hossain Chowdhury, Member of Parliament Bangladesh, raised the broad question: What will be the critical recommendations to adequately articulate recovery in HFA2?
   After consolidating all the inputs from speakers and audience, the side event came up with the following key recommendations:

- Institutionalizing recovery functions in national and local governance systems
- Ensuring financial predictability for recovery programs and activities
- Strengthening coordination of recovery actors as well as considering the trans- boundary nature of recovery
- Recognizing human security as an essential foundation for effective recovery
- Developing concrete and measurable indicators to monitor progress of implementation and achievement of recovery goals

   In view of these recommendations, it was suggested that the future role of IRP may consider acting as a global mechanism for cooperation in the areas of recovery. Its task may include providing technical support on recovery for subnational governments, contributing to achieve sustainable development goals (SDGs), offering technical support on recovery from technological disasters or conflicts, and ensuring seamless integration of recovery in with development plans.
   Three key conclusions were reached at the end of the session. Firstly, recovery should be adequately articulated in HFA2 so that governments can have general guidance in implementing recovery programs. Secondly, recovery (seen as an opportunity to build back better) must also be aligned with the sustainable development goals. Finally, recovery needs further advocacy at the policy and legislative levels to outline clear measures for monitoring progress as well clear roles of government departments and units in implementing recovery programs. 
   The event was concluded successfully with the closing remarks by Mr. Kiyoshi Natori, Executive Director of ADRC.

   The IRP booth showcased various knowledge products including Guidance Notes on 6AMCDRR2.JPGRecovery, newsletters, thematic reports, brochures, and materials on recovery from IRP partners. In addition, the works and activities of IRP are presented in attractive posters that caught the attention of many delegates at the conference. the Secretariat pursued wider dissemination of IRP products and services as well as building and strengthening partnerships.

   Following the 6AMCDRR, the IRP Secretariat participated in the workshop on "Job-rich Recovery after Natural Disasters: Lessons from the Great East Japan Earthquake" organized by ILO Asia-Pacific Office on 27 June 2014 at the United Nations Convention Center in Bangkok.
   The objectives of the workshop included raising awareness of the relevance of employment and social protection policies in the contexts of disaster risk prevention and post-disaster reconstruction; sharing experiences, lessons, and good practices generated from the reconstruction process in Japan since the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake; and identifying strategies for further enhancing knowledge on job-rich disaster risk prevention and6AMCDRR4.JPG reconstruction practice in Asia and the Pacific. The participants who attended the workshop were experts and practitioners in employment policy, social protection, and disaster risk management from selected governments, humanitarian, and development assistance organizations in Asia and the Pacific. 

(2014/07/02 14:40)
22-27 June 2014 (Bangkok, Thailand)

The Asian Disaster Reduction Center (ADRC) participated in the 6th Asian Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (6th AMCDRR)  held in Bangkok, Thailand from 22 to 26 June 2014. The conference participants included more than 3,000 delegates, ministers, and top government officials, as well as UN agencies, international organizations, and NGOs. The objectives of this conference were to generate stronger political commitment for and investments in disaster risk management among the nations of Asia, and to stimulate discussions around the formulation of a post-2015 framework for DRR in preparation for the upcoming 3rd WCDRR to be held in Sendai, Japan. ADRC also helped arrange several side events and facilitated a pre-conference meeting as follows.

[Side Event (SE7): Introduction and Demonstration of the DRR Education Tools and Efforts for Getting Wider Participation of Communities]
ADRC conducted a side event entitled "Introduction and Demonstration of the DRR Education Tools and Efforts for Getting Wider Participation of Communities"" on 23 June 2014 during the 6th AMCDRR. The session aimed to introduce good practices in CBDRM, highlighting disaster education tools that have been promoted by local NGOs and local governments since the 1995 Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake. It also focused on efforts to raise DRR awareness and training programs for local government officials based on lessons learned from that earthquake. The side event was also intended to facilitate discussions around how to localize such tools and efforts in other countries, and it highlighted some successful localization activities from Asia and other parts of the world. 
After the introduction by ADRC, Mr. Masahiko Murata from the Disaster Reduction and Human Renovation Institution (DRI), Mr. Nobuhito Ohtsu of the Kobe City Fire Bureau, and Dr. Ikaputra of Gadjah Mada University introduced their DRR efforts, all of which are based on lessons learned from the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake. First, Mr. Murata of DRI gave a presentation entitled "Hyogo Prefecture's Effort for Capacity Development of Local Government Officials and Raising Awareness of the Public"" in which he introduced the training programs targeting mayors, local government officials, and local residents, as well as efforts to raise public awareness. Mr. Ohtsu of Kobe City next explained "BOKOMI," a community-based disaster risk management organization that has been promoted by Kobe City since the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake. He emphasized the importance of self-self and mutual-help, in addition to public help.
After these two presentations, Dr. Ikaputra of Gadjah Mada University described an example of how disaster education tools have been adapted to Yogyakarta, Indonesia. "Iza! Kaeru Caravan!" is a Japan-based disaster education and awareness raising program for children that was developed by NPO Plus Arts based in Kobe. He localized the tool and conducted the program in Indonesia, ensuring close coordination between Plus Arts and the local residents of Yogyakarta. He concluded his presentation by stressing the need for disaster education for children, as well as the importance of ensuring the beneficial application of various tools within local contexts. Lastly, Mr. David Korunic of AXA Group introduced an example of how CBDRM has been promoted by the private sector and NGOs, explaining AXA-CARE International's joint initiative for building disaster resilience in local communities in Thailand and the Philippines. At the end of the session, all the participants confirmed that there is a need for the development of good educational tools for CBDRM which are based on past experience as well as local contexts. They also highlighted the need for the well-coordinated localization of tools, as well as the benefits of involving the private sector and various stakeholders in CBDRM activities.

[Side Event (SE40): Promotion of DRR Initiatives in Private Sector and Strengthening Public - Private Partnership for Local Resilience Building : Towards HFA2 to be Adopted in 3rd WCDRR in Sendai]
On 25 June 2014, ADRC and the APEC Emergency Preparedness Working Group (EPWG) co-chaired a Side Event entitled " Promotion of DRR Initiatives in Private Sector and Strengthening Public-Private Partnership: for Local Resilience Building: towards HFA2 to be Adopted in 3rd WCDRR in Sendai " Experts from ADRC, APEC EPWG, Sendai City, the Development Bank of Japan, JICA, and Mitsubishi Corporation Insurance gave presentations on their good practices related to the these subjects. 
Dr. Wei-Sen Li from the APEC Emergency Preparedness Working Group gave a presentation on surveys on BCP status, BCP Guidelines for SMEs, and relevant training activities in the APEC region. Sendai City  Vice Mayor, Mr. Yukimoto Ito introduced projects involving collaboration with the private sector, civil society organizations, and communities such as disaster-resilient town planning and the formation of agreements with the private sector regarding logistics and evacuation in times of disaster. Sendai City was recognized as a Role Model in the 2010-2015 World Disaster Campaign "Making Cities Resilient" and will host the 3rd UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction in March 2015. Mr. Tadao Hasue, Deputy General Manager, and Ms. Kumi Onuma, Associate, Tohoku Branch, Development Bank of Japan gave a presentation on their region-wide plans and activities targeting the Tohoku Region including the establishment of the Tohoku Alliance, a Tohoku‐based platform for a flexible alliance among diverse entities in Japan and abroad for knowledge and information sharing. JICA Senior Advisor Dr. Hitoshi Baba introduced JICA's new concepts of "Area BCP" and "Area BCM," which refer to a scalable cross-sector coordination framework for disaster management for business continuity. He also outlined how these are being applied in a pilot project in industrial clusters in the ASEAN region. Mr. Takahiro Ono of Mitsubishi Corporation Insurance then commented on the importance of improving disaster resilience of both private sector enterprises and local governments, and on strengthening community-wide networks to ensure that the best actions are taken. Finally, ADRC Executive Director Mr. Kiyoshi Natori summarized the discussions to conclude the event.

[Pre-Conference (PC-8): Satellite Data and Information to Supplement Regional and National DRR Systems and to Assist Local Communities at Risk]
On 22 June 2014, JAXA and ADRC cooperated in organizing a pre-conference entitled "Satellite Data and Information to Supplement Regional and National DRR Systems and to Assist Local Communities at Risk." The purpose of this event was to share information on how satellite data and information are being used for DRR, to investigate user needs, and to promote the expansion of cooperative structures among operators, governments, and communities with regard to the collection and use of satellite data. This pre-conference was divided into two sessions.
The first session was on "Progress and Issues with Existing Regional and National (Coordination and Management) Initiatives and Related Access Mechanisms." Dr. Lal Samarakoon from AIT showed outcomes of the space technology session at ACDR 2014 which was held in Tokyo in March. Dr. Shirish Ravan from UNOOSA also reported on the outcomes of the ASEAN workshop, given its position as a UN-SPIDER activity. ADRC reported on regional DRR requirements and activities. Mr. Pierre-Henri Pisani from the Embassy of France in Japan explained the latest efforts in the development of an international charter to promote the use of space technologies worldwide. Dr. Sanjay Kumar Srivastava from UNESCAP mentioned harnessing regional cooperation for enhancing national capacity for disaster risk management. And representing JAXS, Mr. Chu Ishida introduced the Sentinel Asia evolution and space agencies' recommendations for HFA2. He also announced that a new satellite, the ALOS2 was launched in May 2014.
The second session was on "Working with Communities at Risk: Initiatives and Projects Devoted to the Use of Earth Observations for the Benefit of Local Communities." Good practices in the use of space technologies in DRR were reported on by Tajikistan, China, Bangladesh, and the Philippines. Professor Shunichi Koshimura from Tohoku University gave a presentation on the analysis and use of satellite images during the Great East Japan Tsunami. Mr. Hiroshi Une from the Geospatial Information Authority of Japan introduced some of the basic data developed by that organization and proposed ways that it might be developed for the DRR field. Professor Ryosuke Shibasaki from the University of Tokyo explained the use of big data and space technology for DRR. 
This pre-conference was tied to the morning pre-conference which was organized by UN-SPIDER. Both organizers put together a proposal on the importance of investing in the systematic generation of products based on space-based and geospatial information.

Final Plenary Session and the "Bangkok Declaration"
At the plenary session held on the final day of the conference, participants adopted the "Bangkok Declaration" to conclude the event. Its policy recommendations to nations and stakeholders are as follows:
1. Enhance resilience at local levels
2. Improve public investment in disaster and climate risk management to protect and sustain development gains
3. Promote public and private partnerships for DRR
4. Promote science and technology
5. Enhance governance, transparency, and accountability
6. Contribute to the global deliberation on the Post-2015 Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction and the development of an Asia-Pacific Regional HFA2 Implementation Plan
7. Ensure that the Post-2015 Framework for DDR is consistent with sustainable development goals and climate change efforts

(2014/06/22 18:30)

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