Citigroup on May 5 announced an additional Rs 200 crore pledge over the next three financial years towards India’s recovery and relief efforts against COVID-19.
Of the total pledged amount, Rs 75 crore is being allocated immediately towards the procurement of oxygen supplies, adding beds to hospitals, diagnostic testing systems, personal protection kits and other supplies for India’s frontline healthcare workers, the bank said in a press release.
The funds will also be utilised towards food and hygiene supplies for low-income families, it said.
“We have been in India for more than 100 years, and the country is home to over 20,000 of our colleagues. We are determined to support India through this unprecedented health crisis,” said Peter Babej, Asia Pacific CEO of Citi.
“Our efforts in India are an important part of our global commitment to fight COVID. Since the onset of the pandemic, we have focused on assisting communities around the world, including through financial support of US$100 million from Citi and the Citi Foundation,” Babej said.
The additional pledged amount for India will also be used to fund public and private healthcare infrastructure and to impart employable skills to the youth, thereby promoting economic revival, important for India’s recovery, Citi said.
“The resurgence in India, which is now overwhelming the country’s healthcare system, calls for efforts from all sections of our society to come together to bring India back on track,” said Ashu Khullar, India CEO of Citi.
Citibank said today’s announcement builds on the Rs 75 crore Citi has already deployed in India towards pandemic relief efforts. Citigroup facilitated 115,076 RT-PCR tests across 17 Municipal Corporations and 9 Districts in Maharashtra covering 24 COVID-19 hospitals/centers and delivered 850 tons of ration supplies to 26,200 families across 20 locations nationally by over 1,000 trucks, enabling 7.8 million meals over a one-month period, it said.
Also, the group funded six startups incubated at the society for Development and Innovation, at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore.