Sydney Morning Herald/Bloomberg

Annual economic losses from natural disasters have almost quadrupled in the past three decades, the World Bank said in a report that recommends investments ranging from early-warning systems to safer roads and buildings.

The average reported losses rose from around $50 billion a year in the 1980s to almost $200 billion a year in the past decade, totaling $3.8 trillion from 1980 to 2012, according to the report, which used data by Munich Re, the world's largest reinsurer. Three-quarters of the total was due to extreme weather, it said.

The report was released 10 days after one of the deadliest typhoons in Philippines history killed more than 3,600 and displaced hundreds of thousands of people.

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