Citigroup pledges disaster relief money

DAVOS, Switzerland, Jan. 26 (UPI) -- The U.N. World Food Program hopes to have disaster relief ready before the next tsunami, earthquake or hurricane strikes, with help from the private sector.

A new initiative -- called the Emergency Network -- was announced by WFP and Citigroup Thursday at the World Economic Forum. It enables companies to donate items such as trucks, telecommunications equipment and food, which the agency can keep on-hand for disaster relief.


"As the rate of emergencies increases, WFP is faced with an unprecedented challenge of developing a faster and more efficient response to potential crises worldwide," said Amer Daoudi, associate director of operations and transport for WFP, in a statement released at the forum in Davos, Switzerland.

Citigroup has also pledged $3.2 million over the next two years to help the agency determine where a disaster may strike next and what needs exist in disaster-prone areas.

Rome-based WFP is the world's largest humanitarian organization and is the United Nations' logistics coordinator in times of disaster.

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