Bill Gates Meets with UK Opposition Leader to Discuss ‘Global Health’

Bill Gates Meets with UK Opposition Leader to Discuss ‘Global Health’

Two days after the installation of Rishi Sunak as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Microsoft founder Bill Gates met with Sunak’s counterpart in the parliament, Labour Party leader Sir Keir Starmer to reportedly discuss climate change and “global health”.

On Wednesday, leader of the opposition Sir Keir Starmer met with ‘master of the universe’ Bill Gates in his office in the Parliament.

Commenting on the meeting, a Labour Party spokesman said: “Keir Starmer was pleased to meet with Bill Gates today and discuss a number of issues of mutual concern including how the UK best supports global health and equitable development, and how we use the goal of net zero to invest in science and technology to deliver the jobs and growth of the future.”

The American billionaire has not commented on the meeting with Starmer at the time of this reporting. It also does not appear that Mr Gates held any meetings with Prime Minister Sunak on Wednesday.

A meeting between Sunak and Gates may present a conflict of interest now that he is prime minister, given the business ties between Microsoft and Infosys, the Indian tech giant that Sunak married into.

While the Microsoft founder is not a British citizen, he has worked closely with previous UK prime ministers, including with Sunak’s former boss, Boris Johnson. Indeed, just over one year ago, Gates travelled to London to meet with Johnson to launch a £400 million joint partnership with the government to bolster green investments in Britain.

“In order to achieve net-zero emissions, we need to reduce the costs of clean technologies so they can compete with and replace the high-emitting products we use today – I call this difference in price the Green Premium,” Gates said at the time.

“Working with public and private sector leaders, including the UK, Catalyst will be a key vehicle for reducing Green Premiums, building the clean industries of tomorrow, and creating lasting jobs in communities around the world,” he added.

It was reported that during his trip last year, Gates also visited with then Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak, and Gates was pictured leaving No.11 Downing Street, then Sunak’s official office. However, no details of the meeting were made public about what was discussed in the meeting.

The decision to meet with the opposition leader just two days after Sunak ascended to Downing Street perhaps demonstrates that Gates has been paying attention to polling, which suggests that Starmer and the Labour Party are heavy favourites in the next general election.

While the Conservatives from Johnson to Sunak have pursued a radical agenda of decarbonising the economy by 2050, the Labour Party may prove a more fruitful ally for Mr Gates given their pledge to invest £28 billion into green projects if they take control of the parliament. The party would likely be amenable to Gates’ ideas surrounding “global health” given their previous urging of Boris Johnson to go further with lockdown measures during the Chinese coronavirus crisis.