The EU and Gates Foundation invests $100m towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals
A strong step towards sustainable development was made today when the EU and Gates Foundation each made contributions of $50 million towards healthcare projects in Africa.
Bill Gates said:
"Improving health outcomes allows a society to become more prosperous and productive. There has been a lot of progress in this area in sub-Saharan Africa since 2000, but we need to do more to incentivize research and innovation that benefit the poor. It is fantastic that the European Commission, in partnership with African countries, is leading the way in reducing deep-seated inequities in global health. This commitment will create opportunities that will help people lift themselves and their communities out of poverty.”
The funding will go through the EU’s External Investment Plan, adopted in September 2017 to boost investment in Africa and countries close to Europe.
The Plan aims to encourage private investment and resources towards achieving the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals, specifically mobilising $44 billion from the private sector by 2020.
European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said:
“This is an investment in our shared future. Europe's partnership with Africa is one in which we support each other, help each other to prosper and make the world a safer, more stable and more sustainable place to live. The EU accounts for a third of foreign direct investment into Africa – this is now helping create jobs and growth on both of our continents. But we must do more to improve the business environment and provide a platform for African innovators to grow"
The news is the second initiative between the EU and Gates Foundation. In December 2017, they announced a partnership to invest almost $600 million into supporting climate-smart agriculture policies in Africa.
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Image Credit: Gates Foundation