MPs urge UK Government to increase funding for The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria0Comments
In a report published today, MPs on the International Development Committee (IDC) praised the work of The Global Fund and the consistency of UK Government support to date. But they also highlighted their concerns about the impact of the delay in delivering the UK Government’s pledge to “significantly increase” resources to The Global Fund.
The report draws on evidence presented to the Committee in April by The Global Fund and DFID along with UK and international partners, including the Roll Back Malaria Partnership, about the importance of the Global Fund’s role in the fight against AIDS, TB and malaria.
The UK Government is a strong supporter of The Global Fund, which has provided AIDS treatment for 3.3 million people, anti-TB treatment for 8.6 million people and over 230 million insecticide-treated mosquito nets to help prevent malaria since its inception in 2001. In March 2011, DFID’s Multilateral Aid Review, assessed The Global Fund as offering “very good value” to the taxpayer. Following this review, the UK Secretary of State announced that the UK Government would “significantly increase” its contribution to The Fund. Twelve months on, in April 2012, he reiterated this commitment in oral evidence presented to the Committee, indicating that the increase could be up to double DFID’s current commitment for 2013-15, subject to reforms. The UK has played a key role in driving the recent Global Fund reform process and the Secretary of State praised the “brilliant” performance of the new General Manager, Gabriel Jaramillo, in his evidence. The UK has not yet, however, confirmed the timing of any announcement to increase funds.
Chair of the Committee the Rt Hon Malcolm Bruce MP said: “The UK has been a reliable partner to the Global Fund but we are concerned at the continued delay in providing additional funds. We strongly urge the Department for International Development to do all possible to commit funds earlier than 2013. A significant increase by the UK could help to catalyse contributions from other donors.”
“The Global Fund is invaluable. It has been highly effective over the past decade in tackling AIDS, TB and malaria in developing countries. It needs to get over its problems and get back to business as soon as possible. My Committee is pleased that the new General Manager is taking forward the necessary reforms required to restore confidence in the Global Fund.”
Evidence was provided to the IDC ahead of this month’s Global Fund Board meeting, at which it was announced that additional funding would be available before the end of the year to support new programmes. Todd Summers, Chair of The Global Fund Board’s Strategy Investment and Impact Committee, expressed his excitement at this new opportunity, but also cautioned that: “we need a lot more money than is currently pledged just to sustain current efforts. While we’re heading in the right direction, there still is a long way to go to meet the real need.”
Reflecting on the IDC findings and recent developments, The Rt Hon Malcolm Bruce MP said: “There has been some welcome news since we completed our report with the Global Fund announcing £630 million in new funds. It is also reassuring to see other countries such as Japan stepping up to the plate with their largest ever annual contribution. Other donors – including the UK – also must commit new funds in the coming months if The Global Fund is to return to full operation speedily and carry on doing what it does best – saving lives.”
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