How to face the migrant crisis: Bill Gates’ recommendations to Europe

Restricting access and improving local conditions in the countries of origin

13-07-201707:01by
Bill and Melinda Gates, founders of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Bill and Melinda Gates, founders of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (Credits: EMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP/Getty Images)

Bill Gates, the successful American entrepreneur, has recently caused heated debates after his comments on the migrant crisis. In fact, Mr. Gates advised the European Union (EU) not to be too generous with the migrants because this would “push many more people to leave Africa”.

Therefore, the American billionaire made public declarations also on the role of Italy – being the most exposed country to the crisis – and envisaged two strategies for the EU. Firstly, Europe needs to make it more difficult for Africans to access its territory, restricting the actual popular routes. Secondly, the EU should provide a greater support to African population in order to foster their development and discourage people to leave their country.

The authority of Bill Gates’ comments relies on the role his “Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation” being a pivotal partner of the European Union in the cooperation and development field. Gates’ Foundation, established in 2000, has become today the most important private organization in the world with an operational asset of 40 billion dollars. About a quarter of these outstanding funds are managed by the EU. In 2015, the Foundation spent 2.4 billion dollars to support social and health programs in the poorest areas of the planet.

As a result, Bill Gates really plays the role of protagonist in helping developing countries and strongly argues that rather than put more effort in welcoming refugees, the EU should make a greater effort to help establishing favourable conditions in the refugees’ homeland so that they would not have to leave. Gates praised the “German model” in Europe, arguing that it should work as virtuous example for other European states. Gates’ appreciation for Germany was due to the government’s commitment to devote 0.7% of the GDP to Asian and African developing nations. Italy is also walking on the same path, assigning 200 million Euros to Nigeria, Tunisia and Libya to counter human smuggling and illegal immigration.

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