THE BLOG

Britain Must Put Malaria Out Of Business - Permanently

25/04/2017 15:24 BST | Updated 25/04/2017 15:24 BST

If you've kept an eye on social media this World Malaria Day then by now I imagine you've discovered the Secret CEO's true identity. The ruthless tycoon and star of our new campaign film is malaria. This World Malaria Day, it's time to put him out of business - permanently.

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Half a million bright young minds a year? Well, like all unscrupulous businessmen he's inflated his numbers - but not by much. Malaria killed 429,000 people in 2015, and this cruel disease still claims the life of a child every two minutes. We all know about the catastrophic human cost of malaria, but this World Malaria Day, the Secret CEO brings our focus to malaria's impact on global business and livelihoods. The moral case to end malaria is clear - we now have a business case too.

It's a shocking fact that malaria can hold back a country's GDP by as much as 1.2% per annum, as our new report Global Britain and Ending Malaria - The Bottom Line shows. In fact, the disease caused an estimated loss of £524billion from global GDP between 2000 and 2015. Yet, if the world were to meet the currently agreed targets to reduce malaria, some $4 trillion of additional economic output would be generated over the next 15 years. Now that would be something.

Both UK businesses and the public can rightly be proud of our country's leadership and investment in tackling malaria. Recent polling shows strong backing from UK businesses for the fight to #EndMalaria for good - seven out of ten British business leaders agree that the UK should play its part in helping to end malaria.

And it's not just businesses that think this way - our polling also shows that the majority of British people back the fight against the disease. For many, this is a true UK aid good news story, and one of the best uses of our development budget. Ending malaria is a tangible goal - it's a target that is within our grasp.

Since last World Malaria Day we've seen an incredible leap forward in the malaria fight. Kyrgyzstan and Sri Lanka have been declared malaria free. Progress is palpable. We're on track to eliminate the disease in a further ten countries in by 2020.

The goal of ending malaria for good is realistic and affordable. In the last five years, new cases have fallen by 21% and deaths globally continue to decline. We are shrinking the malaria map, one country at a time.

This amazing progress means now is the perfect time to look ahead to the how we activate the global plan agreed by the World Health Organization - what we're calling the #MalariaGamePlan: a plan to build on the gains made; a plan to stop malaria from creeping back; a plan to finish the job.

At Malaria No More UK, we think this is what good aid investment looks like: millions of lives saved and economies boosted. With continued support and investment, we can put malaria out of business for good. We can't stop now, and we can't let it win. So, if you do one thing today share our film and join us in our determination to put malaria out of business. Permanently.

Want to follow the malaria campaign on social media? Follow #EndMalaria and #MalariaGamePlan