The World Bank has agreed to give funding to a team that is working to assess the impact of Cyclone Nargis on Burma's devastated Irrawaddy Delta region.

More than $850,000 will go directly to an Association of Southeast Asian Nations emergency assessment team to help it coordinate with Burma's military leaders on providing relief. The funds will also be used to train ASEAN technical staff in damage and loss assessment.

The World Bank has refused to provide direct aid or loans to Burma because its military government has made no payments on outstanding debts since 1998. Burma has also failed to enact economic and other reforms.

Burmese authorities have allowed only a limited number of foreign aid workers into the country and have barred most from entering areas hit hardest by the cyclone.

Cyclone Nargis killed 78,000 people and left 56,000 others missing.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP.