I agree that supporting poor and vulnerable children to access affordable healthcare should remain a priority for UK aid spending. Investing in health services not only saves lives but also helps the most marginalised people to realise their full potential. I was delighted by the UK's £50 million commitment to the World Bank's Global Financing Facility (GFF) at the recent replenishment event. This will help close the global funding gap for maternal and child health services.
The GFF has a unique way of working, so that the UK's contribution and those of other donor countries, will be used to help encourage investment from the private sector and recipient governments. This will help to make medicines, equipment and life-saving resources more available for pregnant women, babies and children in 27 countries across Africa and Asia until 2023.
The UK's new commitment builds on our £30 million investment in the GFF made at the 2017 Family Planning Summit in London, which is designed to enable the GFF to try new financing methods to expand sexual and reproductive health services. Improving access to contraception empowers adolescent girls and women to choose whether or when they have children, giving girls more control over their health and futures.