Prince Alwaleed of Saudi Arabia announced Wednesday that he will give $32 billion to charity in the coming years. The money will be channeled through his organization Alwaleed Philanthropies and will be used to encourage inter-cultural understanding, promote health, eradicate disease, establish orphanages and academic institutions, empower women, provide electricity to remote areas and aid in disaster relief. The prince did not specify a timeline for the projects, according to Bloomberg.
The billionaire prince, who is the richest person in Saudi Arabia and the 20th richest person in the world, is giving away an amount equivalent to the worth of his entire fortune.
Alwaleed said the donation will benefit both Muslim and non-Muslim countries, and he hopes it will help establish a "better world of tolerance, acceptance, equality and opportunity for all," Bloomberg reported.
The prince told reporters his decision had been inspired by the Bill Gates Foundation. He referred to his pledge as his "living will" and said it is a commitment that encompasses boundaries and will benefit "all humankind," Financial Times reported.
The prince already donated $3.5 billion to Alwaleed Philanthropies to work with the Gates Foundation and The Carter Center for health care improvement and epidemic control.
Bill Gates expressed his support for the prince's charitable move and said that it "promises to significantly extend the great work that his foundation is already doing," Financial Times reported.
Alwaleed is the chief executive of Kingdom Holding Co., which owns stakes in News Corp., Twitter, Citigroup and Apple and in hotels like The Four Seasons, Raffles and Fairmont. He plans to lead a board of trustees that will strategically dispense the $32 billion pledge in the coming years, according to Associated Press.
Alwaleed has been doing philanthropic work since the 1980s, and his organization has helped fund academic institutions, health care, community education and infrastrucure projects in 92 countries. He has also invested in programs for youth and women empowerment , according to Financial Times.