Bill Gates wants to get off the rich list by donating his money to charity – and he’s asking others to do the same.
One of the richest people in the world wants to get off the rich list and be an example for other billionaires around the world.
US business tycoon Bill Gates, the world’s fourth richest person, has revealed he plans to donate all of his wealth to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, “other than what I spend on myself and my family”.
“I will go down and eventually out of the list of the richest people in the world,” he wrote in a blog post on Wednesday.
“The fact that I give this money is not a sacrifice at all. I feel privileged to be involved in solving these great challenges, I love the work and believe I have an obligation to give back my resources to society in ways that have the greatest impact in improving lives .
“I hope other people in very wealthy and privileged positions will also step in at this time. »
In the message, Gates said he would transfer nearly US$20 billion (A$30 billion) to the foundation’s endowment this month.
He said it would help the foundation reach its goal of spending more than US$9 billion (AU$13 billion) a year by 2026, up from around US$6 billion (AU$9 billion) spent per year before the pandemic.
During the pandemic, an additional $1.5 billion ($2.2 billion) has been spent to help with the Covid response and $500 million ($740 million) has been committed but has yet to be disbursed.
Mr Gates said the pandemic and the invasion of Ukraine were just two examples of huge global setbacks in recent years that have caused “significant suffering”.
“But the great crises of our time compel us all to do more,” he said. “I hope that by giving more, we can alleviate some of the suffering people are facing right now and help fulfill the foundation’s vision of giving every person the chance to live a healthy and productive life,” said he said in a statement.
His ex-wife, Melinda French Gates, who runs the charity with Mr Gates, said: ‘Philanthropy has a unique role to play in helping people around the world recover from the pandemic and rebuild systems. underlying that left so many people so vulnerable to begin with. »
Mr. Gates listed in his blog the main areas of innovation focused on by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Breakthrough Energy, which he founded in 2015 with a coalition of private investors to support innovations that will lead the world. net zero emissions.
They included preventing pandemics, reducing child deaths, eradicating disease, improving food security and climate adaptation, achieving gender equality, improving outcomes education and climate change mitigation.
Mr. Gates and his ex-wife launched their foundation in 2000.
The couple announced their divorce in May last year, but agreed to continue running the foundation together for a two-year trial period.
The near-gift from Mr Gates announced today will bring the foundation’s endowment to around $70 billion (A$103 billion). It comes after longtime board member Warren Buffett’s $3.1 billion (A$4.6 billion) annual donation last month.