Germany donates EUR 13m to bird flu fund

18th January 2006, Comments 0 comments

18 January 2006, BEIJING - International donors led by the World Bank on Wednesday pledged about 1.9 billion dollars to help poorer nations prevent and control the spread of avian influenza, as delegates to a donors' conference called for "rapid and decisive action" against the virus.

18 January 2006

BEIJING - International donors led by the World Bank on Wednesday pledged about 1.9 billion dollars to help poorer nations prevent and control the spread of avian influenza, as delegates to a donors' conference called for "rapid and decisive action" against the virus.

The United States offered 334 million dollars in financial and technical assistance, while the European Union and its individual member nations pledged a total of about 200 million dollars at the Beijing conference.

The World Bank will provide 500 million dollars in "global adaptable programme loans" for fighting bird flu, World Bank president Paul Wolfowitz said in a speech broadcast at the conference.

The bank estimates that at least 1.2 billion to 1.4 billion dollars will be needed over the next three years to combat bird flu.

"It is still a small sum compared with the damage that could be done if we fail to prevent the spread of the disease," Wolfowitz said.

The EU total includes 13 million euros from Germany, and conference host China promised 10 million dollars for the bird flu fund.

DPA

Subject: German news

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