(New York, 09 December 2009) Today, Hiromasa Yonekura, Chairman and Hiroshi Hirose, President of Sumitomo Chemical signed the UAM soccer balls to commemorate the launch of the UAM initiative.

Sumitomo Chemical developed the Olyset Net by incorporating insecticide into the fiber of a polyethylene net. This technology produces nets that are tough, durable and wash-resistant. Olyset Net was the first LLIN to earn full recommendation from WHO via the rigorous testing procedure known as WHOPES.

In the United Against Malaria initiative, Sumitomo Chemical joins football stars, celebrities, NGOs, and other corporations in support of the 2010 goal of universal access to mosquito nets and malaria medicine in Africa, and the longer-term goal of a sustainable elimination of malaria by 2015.

With its symbolic signature on this soccer ball, Sumitomo Chemical is proud to join forces with the United Against Malaria Campaign, and will collaborate with and ‘pass the ball’ on to these strategic NGO partners to stage high-profile public events leading up to next year’s World Cup in South Africa.

Malaria kills approximately 1 million African children every year and is one of the principal causes of rural poverty. But malaria can be prevented. The United Against Malaria campaign initiatives will draw on the enormous popularity of football in Africa to educate people on how to protect themselves against malaria.

As the manufacturer of Olyset Net, Sumitomo Chemical is committed to promoting malaria prevention, and its 2010 programme will be focused on changing attitudes and behaviour in Africa regarding bed nets and their use.

Building on its successful “footballer vs. malaria” campaign of public service announcements in 2007, Sumitomo Chemical is producing a new public service campaign with a full Dream Team of African Football stars. Many African communities are receiving bed nets for the first time through mass distribution campaigns across the continent. In this campaign, the Company is working with football stars to help new Olyset Net recipients better understand the value of their nets.

For more information, please visit http://www.unitedagainstmalaria.org