London, April 20, 2018 – Malaria No More welcomes today’s pledge by the 53 leaders of the Commonwealth to reduce malaria by half across the Commonwealth by 2023, made at the 2018 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM). If achieved, this game-changing commitment would prevent 350 million malaria cases and save an additional 650,000 lives from this preventable disease, which still kills a child every two minutes.
The Commonwealth and its citizens are disproportionally affected by malaria – accounting for more than half of all global cases and deaths, but just one third of the world’s population. The pledge was included in the official Communique “Towards a Common Future,” which outlines how the Commonwealth “can contribute to a future which is fairer, more sustainable, more secure, and more prosperous.” Commonwealth leaders also committed to accelerate efforts to reduce malaria globally by 90 percent by 2030 and to assess and report on progress against these goals every two years at CHOGM.
The commitment comes on the heels of the Malaria Summit, which catalyzed renewed action to end malaria at a time when more than a decade of progress against the preventable disease has stalled.
“Strong political will by Commonwealth countries is essential to ensuring that one of the best investments in global health – the fight against malaria – gets back on track,” said Martin Edlund, CEO of Malaria No More. “Today’s commitment is a bold step toward ending this disease for good.”
According to the World Health Organization’s World Malaria Report 2017, malaria cases increased in the highest burden countries for the first time in a decade, and a decline in malaria deaths has stalled. Reasons for this include a plateau in global funding for the malaria fight since 2010, growing insecticide resistance, and malaria outbreaks in areas of crisis, war, and conflict. At the same time, 44 countries have less than 10,000 cases, and more than 20 countries are on track to eliminate malaria by 2020. The use of technology and data to know where and when to target malaria interventions is essential to accelerate progress toward elimination and help prevent resurgence.
Earlier this week in London, eleven Heads of State and Government and Vice Presidents from malaria-affected countries, the UK and Australian governments, Bill Gates, HRH Prince Charles, author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, scientists, the private sector and international organizations gathered to call on the Commonwealth to make the pledge. They also announced high-level political support, and just over $4 billion in investments to drive cutting-edge research, better data, and increased access to life-saving malaria tools. Access to these tools – long-lasting insecticides, indoor residual spraying of homes, and malaria testing and treatments – have been responsible for saving seven million lives since 2000 and preventing nearly 1.5 billion cases of malaria.
The commitments build on longstanding support and leadership by the United States, the leading funder in the malaria fight.
“The political leadership and funding, especially from malaria-affected countries, pledged this week in London show that global leaders are ready to beat malaria. These commitments will go a long way to ensuring that the half of the world that is at risk of malaria will have access to the existing suite of life-saving tools, and that we fast-track the development of innovative new tools that will enable us to eliminate malaria within a generation,” said Edlund.
- High-level commitments by Heads of State and government to national and regional malaria elimination targets.
- Significantly increased investment commitments from malaria endemic countries to leverage and complement donor funding.
- Research & development investment from governments and private sector to develop and implement new innovative tools to overcome the growing threat of drug and insecticide resistance.
- Improved methods to track the disease to enable more effective and efficient intervention and to prevent resurgence.
-$225 million in new financing commitments by the UK government to support Global Fund, R&D and efforts in Nigeria.
-The Global Fund announced commitments totalling $2 billion from 46 malaria-affected countries between 2018-2020.
-The Nigerian government committed to prioritize funding for malaria, including securing $300 million in loans from the World Bank, Islamic Development Bank and African Development Bank to help finance their national malaria strategy. They also pledged $18.7 million to leverage an additional $37 million from the Global Fund to distribute 15 million mosquito nets.
-$1 billion in new funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to fund R&D.
-GSK committed to invest a further $251 million; Novartis will invest more than $100 million through 2023 Wellcome Trust to invest $142 million.
-Fivecrop protection companies, BASF, Bayer, Mitsui Chemicals, Sumitomo Chemical Company & Syngenta, launched “ZERO by 40,” a joint initiative supported by IVCC and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, to accelerate development of innovative vector control tools.
For more information or interview requests, contact Michal Fishman at +1 504-220-2792 or Michal.Fishman@MalariaNoMore.org
About Malaria No More
Malaria No More envisions a world where no one dies from a mosquito bite. More than a decade into our mission, our work has contributed to historic progress toward this goal. Now, we’re mobilizing the political commitment, funding, and innovation required to achieve what would be one of the greatest humanitarian accomplishments – ending malaria within our generation. For more information, visit www.malarianomore.org