Gates Foundation earmarks $8.3b to fight poverty, others in 2023
BILL & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) is to spend $8.3 billion on fighting poverty, diseases and inequity in 2023. The Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mark Suzman, who made the announcement, observed that the budget, the biggest in the foundation’s history, is a response to multiple crises that threaten to reverse global progress on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) since outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.
He listed the challenges to include war, economic turmoil, climate-related disasters and large decreases in vaccinations for preventable infectious diseases, all of which have taken a significant toll on world’s poorest people.
Suzman said the budget approval by the board of trustees puts the foundation on track to meeting its commitment to achieve a yearly payout of $9 billion by 2026 and represents a 15 per cent increase over the 2022 projected payout.
His words: “This is the toughest period for global health and development in recent memory, but in some ways, it’s also the reason we exist.”
“To help meet the great needs ahead, we are doubling down on our commitment to our core mission: ensuring everyone can live a healthy and productive life. People in low- and middle-income countries, particularly women and girls, are facing the severe consequences of intersecting global crises, yet the world has so far failed to step up with the necessary political will and resources to respond.”
The CEO also shared examples of how the foundation uses its resources, voice and convening power to call attention to and help find solutions for problems that otherwise might be neglected.
Suzman, in his yearly letter, addressed questions about the scale of the foundation’s influence and its access to global leaders. Using examples from the organisation’s work on climate adaptation, malaria and U.S. education, he detailed how BMGF catalyses and advocates for solutions, brings diverse voices to decision-making tables and fills market gaps. He also discussed the role the foundation plays in setting global health and development priorities.