Bill Gates: I love Norway
Microsoft founder Bill Gates said during a meeting with businessmen in Oslo, Norway that billionaires ought to give away most of their wealth to charitable causes, and they would even find they enjoyed it.
During their first trip to Norway Bill og Melinda Gates had lunch with Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg and his wife Ingrid Schulerud, at the Oslo Opera House on Wednesday Jun 3. After lunch the couples enjoyed a little stroll on the Opera roof, where Gates told the press “I love Norway”.
The lunch took place prior to a meeting with Norwegian businessmen, where Gates said: “I think all billionaires should give away the vast majority of their fortunes”. Gates has given much of his wealth from Microsoft, the US software giant that made him the world’s richest man, to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, a philanthropic powerhouse.
“I’m a great believer that great wealth should go from the richest to the poorest,” he said, seated next to his wife Melinda, who co-chairs the foundation. Gates renewed his appeal to eradicate polio, saying the goal was well within reach, which would make it the second major communicable disease entirely wiped out after smallpox in the late 1970s.
Gates said his foundation’s biggest success had been in the field of vaccination. “Vaccination is the area where we have saved millions of lives, and there is more to be done.” He said it was a big disappointment that science had not produced a vaccine to prevent HIV/AIDS, but he said he was optimistic about some emerging prevention methods that could be used by women to stop infection before a vaccine is discovered. Once one of those methods proved to work, he said, the foundation would work “to get it out there and dramatically decrease the number getting (the disease).”
At the gathering Gates also praised Norway, Sweden, Denmark and the Netherlands for their generosity. After the meeting the Gates visited with King Harald V and Queen Sonja at the Royal Palace.