Microsoft founder Bill Gates has warned that Africa’s population explosion will overwhelm Europe unless the continent makes it more difficult for migrants to reach its shores.
The American billionaire’s comments come as European leaders discuss what to do about the surging number of Africans arriving in Italy each week, with Rome calling for other European Union (EU) nations to open their ports to docking migrants so as to ease pressure on the Mediterranean nation.
In an interview with the German Welt am Sonntag newspaper, Gates said massive population growth in Africa will result in “enormous [migratory] pressure” on Europe unless countries increase overseas development aid payments.
Praising Germany having achieved its commitment to devote 0.7 per cent of GDP to foreign aid as “phenomenal”, the 61-year-old called on “other European nations to follow its example”.
But Gates also spoke of a dilemma caused by ‘the German attitude to refugees’, referring to Chancellor Angela Merkel’s decision to open Europe’s borders to illegal migrants arriving from the third world.
“On the one hand you want to demonstrate generosity and take in refugees, but the more generous you are, the more word gets around about this — which in turn motivates more people to leave Africa,” Gates told the Sunday newspaper.
“Germany cannot possibly take in the huge, massive number of people who are wanting to make their way to Europe.”