24 Sep 2013, BioSpectrum Bureau , BioSpectrum
Singapore: United Kingdom (UK) has committed to contrbute $1.6 billion to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.
Ms Justine Greening, Secretary of State for International Development, UK, announced that it will contribute $1.6 billion to the Global Fund for the 2014-16 period, or $533 million per year, the second-largest pledge by any government so far. The US has requested $1.65 billion per year for the Global Fund in its 2014 budget.
Dr Nafsiah Mboi, chair of the board of the Global Fund, cited the extraordinary leadership and generosity of the UK and thanked Prime Minister Mr David Cameron for his long-term vision and Secretary Greening for her unwavering support.
"This commitment will underlie a transformative step forward for the Global Fund and partners in their fight to defeat AIDS, TB and malaria," said Dr Mboi. "The UK gives us all an inspiring model of responsible global citizenship."
The UK commitment is geared towards encouraging other donors to maximize their own pledges to the Global Fund, effectively unlocking additional funds with each contribution, as the UK contribution is limited to a maximum of 10 percent of the total raised for the Global Fund.
The Department for International Development, which leads the UK's efforts to end extreme poverty, has championed the cause of helping to halve malaria deaths in 10 of the worst affected countries by 2015. It has also been a strong advocate of the launch this year of a new funding model that allows the Global Fund to invest more strategically, achieve greater impact and engage partners more effectively.
The UK has targeted saving the lives of 50,000 women in pregnancy and childbirth and 250,000 newborn babies as well as helping to immunize more than 55 million children against preventable diseases. Allowing at least 10 million more women to use modern methods of family planning by 2015 is also a priority.