Yemen Company Pledges $1.2MM For UN Supertanker Operation

Yemen Company Pledges $1.2MM For UN Supertanker Operation
HSA Group's contribution is the first committed by a private sector organization.

Yemen’s largest private company, HSA Group, has announced that it has pledged $1.2 million to support the UN’s emergency FSO Safer appeal.

HSA Group’s contribution, which the company noted is the first committed by a private sector organization, will go towards the UN’s $80 million target to fund an emergency operation to remove the tanker’s oil cargo and safely transfer it to another vessel, HSA Group highlighted.

To date, the UN has received $64 million in pledges from over a dozen governments, HSA Group outlined, adding that less than $16 million is now required “to help ensure the critical mission can occur”.

The FSO Safer has recently deteriorated beyond repair and could disintegrate or explode at any time, with its oil cargo spilling into the Red Sea, HSA Group noted. The company highlighted that the oil tanker is one of the world’s largest shipping vessels, carrying over one million barrels of crude oil.

“HSA Group is gravely concerned by the impending threat of an oil spill from FSO Safer,” Nabil Hayel Saeed Anam, the managing director of HSA Group - Yemen region, said in a company statement.

“A spill on the scale projected by the UN would have a devastating impact on Yemen. It would aggravate the world’s worst humanitarian crisis, threaten millions with starvation, and destroy livelihoods. It would also be an unimaginable ecological catastrophe,” Anam added in the statement.

“HSA has closely followed the campaign led by the UN and the generous donations pledged by the international community. Given that there remains a large funding shortfall, and time is running out, HSA believes that the private sector must step forward,” Anam contined.

“We hope that this first donation from the private sector may serve to encourage other companies across the world to contribute to the UN’s response and avert this potentially catastrophic crisis,” the HSA Group managing director went on to note.

The UN announced last week that it was urgently working to raise money for the Safer tanker project.

Back in July, the UK announced $2.3 million (GBP 2 million) in UK funding for the UN appeal, which was in addition to $4.7 million (GBP 4 million) pledged in May. In June, U.S. Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken announced that the Department of State was working with Congress to provide $10 million in support of the UN plan to address the “imminent threat” to the Red Sea ecosystem from the FSO Safer in Yemen.

In May, a joint statement from representatives of the U.S. and Netherlands governments warned that the FSO Safer could explode at any time.

To contact the author, email andreas.exarheas@rigzone.com



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