Government of Canada

Global Affairs Canada

Canada and Mali Sign Agreement to Advance Canada’s G-8 Muskoka Initiative Commitment to Save the Lives of Mothers, Newborns and Children Under Five

August 23, 2010

Bamako, Mali/Ottawa, Canada — The Honourable Beverley J. Oda, Canada's Minister of International Cooperation, and Mali's Minister of Territorial Administration and Local Communities, Général Kafougouna Koné, today signed a Letter of Intent confirming a renewed maternal, newborn and child health (MNCH) partnership between Canada and Mali.

"With this Letter of Intent, Canada is taking an important step forward in its Muskoka Initiative to assist Mali in improving the health of mothers, newborns, and children," said Minister Oda. "Working together, within the Mali Health Program, we will build on the progress currently being achieved in Mali. I appreciate the confidence the Government of Mali has expressed in Canada's development programs, and we are confident that this partnership will result in healthier mothers and children ready to realize a better future."

The Canada-Mali partnership will concentrate on training health workers, strengthening Mali's comprehensive primary health systems at the local level, improving nutritional health, and reducing the effects of diseases on mothers, newborns, and children under five. The two countries have also agreed to enhance the coordination and integration of Canada's development efforts in order to achieve greater effectiveness and lasting results in reducing maternal and child mortality.

"I welcome the opportunity to emphasize a renewed partnership with Canada," said Mr. Oumar Ibrahima Touré, Minister of Health. "This partnership is important to us because it allows us to accelerate the reduction of maternal and child mortality in Mali. Canada's support will help us achieve the Millennium Development Goals."

During his participation at the G-8 Development Ministers Meeting in Halifax and at the African Partnership Forum in Toronto in April, Minister Touré reiterated the importance of donor countries supporting Mali's national plan. Under Canada's leadership in Halifax, all G-8 development ministers agreed that supporting national health plans was an effective development principle to achieve sustainable results. The Government of Mali's Health and Social Development Program is designed to provide an integrated and comprehensive MNCH package of activities to all levels of the health system, including the local level.

Canada has had a long history of development assistance in Mali. For a full list of CIDA programming in Mali in maternal and child health, and other areas, please visit the CIDA website at

- 30 -


Jessica Fletcher
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of International Cooperation
Telephone: 819-953-6238

Media Relations Office
Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA)
Telephone: 819-953-6534