Elon Musk will sell Tesla stock if UN can prove billionaire's wealth can solve world hunger

A small group of ultra-wealthy individuals could help problem with just a fraction of their net worth

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Photo: File
Photo: File

Published: Mon 1 Nov 2021, 3:31 PM

Last updated: Mon 1 Nov 2021, 3:52 PM

United Nations' World Food Programme (WFP) director David Beasley, in an interview on CNN's Connect the World with Becky Anderson, which is telecast from Abu Dhabi, said global hunger could be solved with the help of some of the world’s wealthiest individuals.

This small group of ultra-wealthy individuals just need to cough up a fraction of their net worth, according to the director.

Responding to comments from Beasley, Tesla CEO Elon Musk issued a typical provocative Twitter challenge.

“If WFP can describe on this Twitter thread exactly how $6B will solve world hunger, I will sell Tesla stock right now and do it,” Musk tweeted, following up to stipulate that the details must be “open source accounting, so the public sees precisely how the money is spent.”

Musk’s pledge was in response to a tweet from a user who was sceptical about the CNN headline.

The WFP raised $8.4 billion in 2020 to help feed impoverished people. Why, the user asks, didn’t that solve world hunger?

David Beasley was quick to chime in on Twitter and shed some light on the debate.

Beasley responded that CNN’s headline was “not accurate” and confirmed that $6 billion will not “solve world hunger.” Rather, Beasley and the WFP want $6 billion to feed “42 million people that are literally going to die if we don’t reach them” this year.

This Twitter exchange didn't come up with any answers, but many critics want the likes of Elon Musk to try to figure it out a solution to such global crisis.

Beasley has been repeating his call to billionaires, asking them to step up to address world hunger.


Tesla chief executive Musk has a net worth of nearly $289 billion, according to Bloomberg, meaning that Beasley is asking for a donation of just 2% of his fortune. The net worth of US billionaires has almost doubled since the pandemic began, standing at $5.04 trillion in October, according to progressive groups Institute for Policy Studies and Americans for Tax Fairness.

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