European global health civil society organisations welcome the European Commission’s announcement to increase its commitment to the Global Fund for 2017-2019
Brussels, 3 March 2016. The Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, Neven Mimica, announced today that the European Commission will increase its contribution to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria for 2017-2019. The pledge of EUR 470 million represents an increase of more than 27% from the Commission’s previous commitment made in 2013.
European global health civil society organisations applaud the European Commission’s leadership in transforming the Sustainable Development Goals into reality by living up to the commitment of ending AIDS, TB and malaria by 2030 through a fully funded Global Fund. The Global Fund estimates that $13 billion is needed between 2017 and 2019.
Charles Goerens, Vice-Chair of Friends of the Global Fund Europe and Member of the European Parliament, said “I commend the Commissioner’s leadership. Even faced with several crises at the moment, the Commission has reaffirmed its understanding of the urgent need to continue advancing the fight against the three epidemics and ending them by 2030 as called for in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. I hope now that EU Member States will be encouraged by the Commission and that they will also renew their commitments so that we will have a fully-funded Global Fund to ensure the scaling-up of successful programmes in the crucial phase of the fight during 2017-2019.”
The Global Fund has proven to be an effective mechanism in supporting hardest hit countries to end the three diseases, helping fund health programmes targeting most at risk populations and supporting countries build strong community and health systems. Today’s robust commitment by the European Commission, should be matched by stronger political leadership in the response to HIV and TB epidemics in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, where countries have increasingly been ineligible to development assistance due to rapid economic growth.
“The European Commission needs to play a political convener role in the region, and facilitate policy dialogue between stakeholders to come up with a political plan to revert the rapid increase in HIV infections and the significant threat of multi-drug resistant TB in the wider European region” says Patrick Bertrand from Global Health Advocates. “This is particularly important when faced with diseases that primarily affect criminalised populations such as drug users. If we are to truly end the epidemics, Europe should increase its support to civil society organisations working with inadequately served populations at country level as those groups will not be reached without civil society and community involvement.” said Michel Kazatchkine, Chair of the International Steering Committee of the Robert Carr civil society Networks Fund. The European Commission services should come together to discuss concrete political strategies in the region to ensure investments and progress made so far do not recede.
Notes to the Editor:
- The Robert Carr civil society Networks Fund (RCNF) is the first international fund that specifically aims to strengthen civil society networks across the world. In the three years since the fund has been launched, it has achieved major results, such as enhancing the HIV response implementation, strengthening human rights advocacy and positive resource accountability for the HIV response.Aids Fonds is Fund Management Agency to the RCNF.
- The TB Europe Coalition is an informal advocacy network of non-governmental organisations and individuals that share a commitment to raising awareness of TB and to increasing the political will to control the diseases throughout the WHO European Region and worldwide.
- The Global Fund is a 21st-century partnership designed to accelerate the end of AIDS, TB and malaria as epidemics. As a partnership between governments, civil society, the private sector and people affected by the diseases, the Global Fund mobilizes and invests nearly US$4 billion a year to support programs run by local experts in more than 100 countries.
For more information: Fanny Voitzwinkler Coordinator, TB Europe Coalition
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