Comic Relief - which this year raised over £100m from its flagship event Red Nose Day - is backing Transaid with £1m of support over  the next five years.

The tie up was announced last night at a reception at Buckingham Palace in the presence of Transaid patron HRH The Princess Royal to mark the overseas development charity's 15th anniversary, sponsored by corporate partners Bandvulc and Barclays.

The funding from Comic Relief is to help develop transport systems in northern Nigeria to get pregnant women with complications potentially life-saving medical help.

HRH The Princess Royal told an audience of invited guests, which included Transaid patrons, supporters and fund raisers, that some might say 15 years was too soon to celebrate - and she agreed that Transaid was only just starting to realise its potential. Transaid was originally set up at the behest of HRH The Princess Royal to develop transport systems and so boost the effectiveness of Save the Children. "We take transport for granted in this country," she said. "Your expertise can make a real difference in countries with little or no transport infrastructure."

Transaid chief executive Gary Forster said that while Transaid punched well above its weight it could do much more with greater support. "We have just 17 corporate members in the whole logistics industry," he said. "Imagine what we could do with twice that number."