WFP network to boost France's humanitarian aid system

The United Nations Humanitarian Response Depot in Brindisi, Italy. Photo by: pandemia / CC BY

France has signed up to use a network of humanitarian hubs built and managed by the World Food Program to easily pre-position and deploy assistance in the immediate aftermath of disasters around the world.

France’s decision to use the U.N. Humanitarian Response Depots is expected to boost efficiency of the country’s humanitarian assistance system and help improve coordination of international response to disasters.

Under the agreement France signed with WFP, the latter can now buy, store and deploy emergency humanitarian supplies on behalf and at the request of the Crisis Center of the French Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs.

The UNHRD network comprises five hubs where WFP strategically stores food aid, among other humanitarian supplies. These hubs can be used by other international organizations and countries, and also function as logistic and training centers. Their locations — in Italy, United Arab Emirates, Malaysia, Ghana and Panama — were selected based on proximity to disaster-prone areas and international airports and ports.

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    Ivy Mungcal

    As former senior staff writer, Ivy Mungcal contributed to several Devex publications. Her focus is on breaking news, and in particular on global aid reform and trends in the United States, Europe, the Caribbean, and the Americas. Before joining Devex in 2009, Ivy produced specialized content for U.S. and U.K.-based business websites.