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Marathon Oil and our partners in the Bioko Island Malaria Control Project commemorated the 10th anniversary of the life-saving project in August 2014. Marathon Oil led the formation of the unique public-private partnership that supports the project after identifying rampant malaria as the largest social risk to the Company and the community in Equatorial Guinea.
As a result of the project, malaria transmission by mosquitoes is down by nearly 70 percent among children 2 to 14 years old, and malaria-related deaths in children under age 5 have declined by 65 percent. The project has also improved health and wellbeing of the people living on Bioko Island, which in turn has helped reduce the economic burden of malaria and alleviate poverty in Equatorial Guinea.
In addition, during project Phases I and II, the partners pioneered an integrated intervention program that has transformed malaria control efforts around the world. Project data collected and analyzed on all facets of malaria control and treatment have become the benchmarks in global malaria elimination efforts. The project’s successes, challenges and lessons learned have been widely shared through scientific publications and the press.
Already one of the longest sustained malaria control projects in recent history, the public-private partnership agreed in 2013 to extend the project through 2018 to continue the use of standard anti-malaria control measures. In addition, the project and Equatorial Guinea will play a major role researching a promising vaccine designed by Sanaria Inc. to block transmission of malaria. If this vaccine proves effective and is licensed for use, malaria experts are optimistic that the vaccine, when used together with the other established control measures, will wipe out malaria on Bioko Island.
The Bioko Island Malaria Control Project is the collaborative effort of the Government of Equatorial Guinea along with Marathon Oil, Noble Energy, SONAGAS and GEPetrol via their ownership interests in the Alba and Block D PSCs, Alba Plant LLC and Atlantic Methanol Production Company LLC. Additionally, collaboration on the new vaccine initiative has expanded to include contributions by EG LNG. Both the traditional project and the new vaccine initiative are being administered by the private nongovernmental organization Medical Care Development International (MCDI).