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MCC Hammered

On June 23, The Economist took a closer look at the MCC. MCC Hammered: In Praise of a bold but unloved aid agency highlights the merits of George Bush's flagship development program and the challenges at hand. The article reads:

Interview with Jean Stephenne / GSK Biologicals

bvgh_logo.jpgInteresting interview with Jean Stephenne, the President and General Manager of GSK Biologicals, the Rixensart, Belgium-based vaccine unit of GlaxoSmithKline PLC, which accounts for more than a quarter of worldwide vaccine sales.

British All-Party Malaria Group Calls For More Action On Malaria

The British All-Party Parliamentary Malaria Group has warned that efforts to tackle poverty in Africa are doomed unless they also tackle the continent's burden of malaria. A new report entitled "Tackle Malaria Today: Give Tomorrow a Chance" (pdf) says that "any new initiative for Africa must be accompanied by a massive and sustained science-based and operationally practical scale-up of efforts to stamp out malaria on the continent".

Guest Column -- Armenia and Human Rights: A Test for the MCA

We are delighted to post our very first guest column. The column provides MCA watchers an opportunity to share their opinions with the rest of us who follow this program. In Armenia and Human Rights: A Test for the MCA, Jennifer Windsor, Executive Director of Freedom House, discusses democracy and human rights standards in the MCA selection process.
Windsor writes:

Awkward Timing for MCC Chief's Departure

Financial Times' Andrew Balls reported last night that Paul Applegarth's surprise resignation resulted from failing confidence within the Bush administration that the flagship aid program was fulfilling expectations. Ball wrote:

The timing of the resignation was awkward for the administration, occurring just before the Group of Eight summit in Scotland next month. At the summit, President George W. Bush will promote the Millennium Challenge Account, overseen by the MCC, as the US's preferred way of raising aid flows to African countries.

Gates Foundation Renews Funding of BVGH

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation announced on Tuesday that it had awarded $5.4 million to BIO Ventures for Global Health. The four-year grant will be used by the nonprofit BIO Ventures for Global Health to encourage biotechnology companies to develop drugs for diseases now neglected by them because of disinterest and uncertainty about doing business in the Third World. BIO Ventures was launched by the Biotechnology Industry Organization last year with funding from the Gates and Rockefeller foundations.

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