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Sweden Upscales Support to Global Fight Against Hunger Amid Pandemic and Conflicts

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BNN Correspondents
New Update

Sweden's Historic Commitment to the World Food Programme

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The Swedish government has recently made a decisive move to bolster its support to the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), a leading humanitarian organization charged with the mission of battling hunger worldwide. This decision is a strategic response to the escalating global food insecurity instigated by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and conflicts in various regions of the world.

Sweden has a long-standing partnership with the WFP and this recent action reaffirms its commitment to mitigate global hunger. For the year 2021, the Swedish government has vowed to provide 300 million Swedish Krona (approximately 35.7 million USD) to support WFP's operations, marking a significant increase from the 245 million Swedish Krona (approximately 29.3 million USD) donated in the previous year.

The Impact of Increased Support

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The WFP is globally recognized for its significant role in delivering food assistance in emergencies and working closely with communities to enhance nutrition and build resilience. The additional funds from Sweden will be channeled to bolster WFP's operations worldwide. This includes its work in conflict-ridden regions and countries grappling with the impacts of climate change.

Sweden's Minister for International Development Cooperation, Per Olsson Fridh, emphasized that the COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated existing global challenges, making Sweden's support to the WFP even more crucial. He further highlighted that the WFP's work is instrumental in implementing the Swedish strategy for global food security and nutrition.

Impending Global Food Crisis

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The WFP has issued warnings of an impending global food crisis due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This crisis could potentially lead to a doubling of the number of people facing acute food insecurity, from 135 million in 2019 to a staggering 265 million by the end of 2021.

Sweden's decision to increase its funding from 245 million Swedish Krona in 2020 to 300 million Swedish Krona in 2021 is a critical move in addressing the rising global food insecurity. The funds will be utilized to support WFP's operations across the globe, particularly in regions affected by conflict and climate change. The Swedish government's commitment underlines the urgency of global cooperation and solidarity in combating hunger and ensuring food security.

Sweden's Multi-Year Strategic Partnership Agreement with WFP

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In 2018, the Swedish Government and the WFP signed a Strategic Partnership Agreement, with Sweden committing a historic amount of approximately US$370 million in flexible funds to the WFP over four years. This marked the largest contribution ever made by a donor within a WFP Strategic Partnership Agreement.

This generous contribution allowed the WFP to save lives in various locations and at different times, providing hope to millions of people, including those most vulnerable in some of the world's most heart-breaking crises.

Sweden's leadership in providing flexible funding stands out at a time when more than 90 percent of government contributions to the WFP are earmarked for specific operations or activities. Sweden is also one of WFP's strongest advocates for reduced earmarking among donors, leading the global effort to increase flexible humanitarian funding for the most pressing needs.

Closing Remarks

In summary, the increased support by the Swedish government to the United Nations World Food Programme is a significant move in the global fight against hunger. Amid the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic and conflicts worldwide, this decision underscores the fact that global food security and nutrition are shared responsibilities that require collective action. The commitment and leadership of countries like Sweden provide a beacon of hope and a way forward in addressing these pressing global challenges.

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