Haiti quake may have caused $14B in damage

February 16, 2010 11:07:52 AM PST
The main development bank for Latin America says the Jan. 12 earthquake that ravaged Haiti's capital might have caused nearly $14 billion in damage.

The preliminary study released Tuesday says the magnitude-7 earthquake could be the deadliest and costliest disaster on a list that dates back four decades.

Economists with the Inter-American Development Bank used figures including death-toll estimates of 200,000 to 250,000 to calculate that damage could be worth anywhere from $7.2 billion to $13.9 billion.

That is more than the country's gross domestic product.

The authors also warn that in past disasters, personal wealth remained 30 percent lower 10 years after the events even with large amounts of international aid.