Gates To Tell G20 Leaders To Continue Funding Health, Agriculture Programs Despite Economic Downturn, Reuters Reports

In an interview with Reuters, Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, said Monday “he would tell G20 leaders at a summit in France next month … it was critical that rich donors continue to fund health and agriculture projects in developing countries despite budget cuts in the United States and Europe,” the news agency reports. “He said there was ample evidence that agricultural and health programs in developing countries made a big difference in the livelihoods of the poor and boosted economic stability,” Reuters writes.

During a ceremony Monday in Washington, D.C., at which Gates received the George McGovern Leadership Award from the World Food Programme (WFP) for his work to help farmers overcome hunger and poverty, he spoke about the continuing food crisis in the Horn of Africa, saying, “It is unconscionable for a famine of this magnitude to be happening in 2011. The world has the knowledge, tools, and resources to help the world’s poorest overcome hunger and extreme poverty,” according to Reuters (Wroughton, 10/24).