Skip to main content

European Union supports WFP operations to transport critical Covid-19 relief

ROME – A €4.5 million (US$5 million) contribution from the European Union has enabled the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) to provide vital support to the global pandemic response by transporting humanitarian staff and cargo needed to fight COVID-19 to destinations all around the world.

With global supply chains suffering unprecedented disruptions due to measures aimed at stopping the spread of the disease, WFP put its expertise and vast operational footprint at the service of the humanitarian community. Through its Global Common Services Plan, WFP provided the logistics backbone of the global pandemic response.

Leveraging a network of eight humanitarian response hubs around the world, connected by air, road and sea links, WFP has dispatched over 148,000 m3 of critical health cargo to date. Supplies including ventilators and personal protective equipment have been transported to 173 countries on behalf of 72 organizations. WFP has also transported over 28,000 health and humanitarian workers from 424 organizations to 68 destinations, and as part of its role in the UN Medevac cell, has carried out 121 medical evacuations globally.  

European Commissioner for Crisis Management, Janez Lenarčič, said: “The logistical challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic to the humanitarian community made a swift delivery of aid to vulnerable people across the world a challenge and a priority. The EU is committed to continue supporting partners like the WFP in their global logistical efforts to make sure that vital assistance keeps reaching those who need it the most.”

“Through generous donors such as the European Union, we’ve been able to support the global health and humanitarian response to this pandemic,” said Amer Daoudi, WFP Senior Director of Operations. “Without long-term supporters like the European Union, we wouldn’t have been able to ensure that these vital supplies made it to the frontlines of the pandemic response.”

As the response transitions towards therapeutics and commercial transport markets bounce back, WFP is in the process of phasing down its free-to-user cargo services but is maintaining capacity so it can reinstate these should the need arise.


#                     #                          #


The United Nations World Food Programme is the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate.  We are the world’s largest humanitarian organization, saving lives in emergencies and using food assistance to build a pathway to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change.


Follow us on Twitter @wfp_media and @wfplogistics


European Union (Member Organization) Funding Health emergencies Logistics and delivery networks


For more information please contact (email address:

Alicia Stafford, WFP/ Rome,
Tel. +39 06 6513 4144,
Mob. +39 342 7719 577
Jenny Wilson, WFP/Rome,
Tel. +39 06 6513 2258,
Mob. +39 342 1235 169