The United States, already the global leader in funding efforts to combat avian and pandemic influenza, today raised its pledge to $ 629 million (Rs. 2,469 crore), at the closing session of the International Ministerial Conference on Avian and Pandemic Influenza in New Delhi.
Announcing the contribution at the conference, U.S. Special Representative on Avian and Pandemic Influenza John E. Lange said, "As the largest single country donor, the United States is engaged, at the highest levels, in efforts to prevent the spread of avian influenza in poultry and avert the possibility of a human pandemic. We are facing a deadly virus and the world must confront it united -- the alternative could be catastrophic." Today's pledge by the U.S. represents an increased contribution of $195 million (Rs. 765 crore).
The new funds will support the efforts of international organizations, non-governmental organizations and others to strengthen global preparedness and response to Avian Influenza and a potential human influenza pandemic. A portion of these resources will support India's surveillance program for animal and human disease.