The Private Sector and Humanitarian Relief

Publication date

08 Mar 2012

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Oxfam supports informed private sector involvement in humanitarian assistance where it contributes positively to the efforts of the humanitarian community, i.e. where it provides aid that helps to save lives, alleviate suffering, and promote human dignity, as well as the engagement of new actors in post-emergency recovery and reconstruction activities. The private sector can add to humanitarian capacity through the skills and competencies it brings, particularly in logistics and information and communications technology. Humanitarian agencies can gain important insights from the private sector's emphasis on results and value-for-money, while remembering that the results that count are the impact on people in need, not just the measurement of outputs. The private sector may provide new practices and perspectives to the humanitarian aid community that contribute to improvements in the effectiveness of assistance. Domestic companies in the country affected by an emergency often bring important local knowledge that can improve humanitarian responses.