Today I announce that the Australian Government will provide an additional $50 million to Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, our key global partner in delivering vaccines to children in developing countries.

The $50 million pledge for this year brings Australia’s commitment to Gavi to $250 million over five years.

Australia’s support for Gavi helps save millions of lives in the world’s poorest countries by providing vaccines to combat preventable diseases. Since 2000, Gavi vaccines have immunised 440 million children in developing countries, giving them a healthy start in life.

Part of Gavi’s success lies in its business model that brings together the research community, vaccine manufacturers, donors and recipients.

An excellent example of why this model works is the roll-out of the HPV vaccine to Gavi-eligible countries. Developed by an Australian, Dr Ian Frazer, the HPV vaccine prevents cervical cancer; 85 per cent of women who die from this cancer live in developing countries.

I have encouraged Gavi to use its expertise in distribution and securing lower prices to assist in the Ebola crisis once a proven, safe and effective vaccine is developed.

Health is a key pillar of the Government’s aid policy framework. Australia’s investment in Gavi is part of the Government’s $700 million investment in health-focused development assistance this year.

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