On behalf of all of us at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), I would like to extend my sincere congratulations to the World Food Programme (WFP) and its Executive Director, the Honorable David Beasely, for winning the Nobel Prize for Peace. This well-deserved honor recognizes the WFP’s tireless work around the globe to feed those made vulnerable to hunger by conflict and crises.
In close partnership with the WFP, USAID has been on the frontlines to combat global hunger and feed the most vulnerable in more than 50 countries. Executive Director Beasley, an American with a distinguished, life-long career in public service, has demonstrated great leadership. He exemplifies the commitment of the United States to providing humanitarian aid around the world.
The U.S. Government, through USAID, is the largest donor to the WFP, and is responsible for more than 40 percent of the total voluntary contributions to the organization, including more than $3.5 billion in Fiscal Year 2020. We appreciate that the Nobel Committee made its decision, in part, to help the WFP raise additional funds. This is why USAID continues to call for all donors to increase their contributions to the WFP substantially, as well as their involvement to prevent hunger.
The WFP’s work has become even more critical as the global pandemic of COVID-19 worsens hunger for millions. With funding from the American people, the WFP has provided emergency food assistance in over 20 countries severely affected by the pandemic. Notably, to overcome obstacles in the delivery of food, USAID joined other donors to finance the WFP to stand up a network of logistics hubs around the world that manage as many as 350 humanitarian cargo flights and 350 passenger flights every month to locations cut off from commercial air as a result of COVID-19.
I thank the Nobel Committee for recognizing the critical role of the WFP and its thousands of humanitarians, who have eased suffering and saved lives at this challenging time of heightened and growing needs around the world.
USAID stands with the WFP, Executive Director Beasley, and all of our humanitarian partners dedicated to helping people in need. Congratulations!