Reportage

Global Fund Replenishment meeting opens in Berlin

26 September 2007

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Delegates from donor countries and international organizations gathered in Berlin on Wednesday 26 September to begin the second of the Global Fund’s biennial meetings to raise funds for its programmes to provide essential HIV, tuberculosis and malaria services in developing countries. The meeting, which runs through to Thursday 28 is being attended by a delegation from UNAIDS led by Executive Director Dr Peter Piot. The meeting will be chaired by former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan and co-chaired by Sven Sandström, former Managing Director of the World Bank. German Chancellor Angela Merkel will make remarks at the opening of the official portion of the meeting on Thursday, in which donor countries will pledge to make contributions for the Global Fund’s operations for the next three years.

In the lead-up to the pledges, a number of related events took place on Wednesday 26 including the launch of a new initiative based around debt-relief called "Debt2Health". The initiative uses debt conversion as a mechanism whereby a creditor or a group of creditors agrees to cancel a portion of a country's debt on the condition that the beneficiary invests an agreed-upon amount in a Global Fund-approved programme. The German government made the first offer to forgo repayment of 50 million Euros on the condition that Indonesia invests the equivalent of 25 million Euros in health through approved Global Fund programmess.

In addition, members of civil society came together with meeting participants to discuss their evolving relationship, and representatives from major health and human rights organizations discussed the scale-up of gender sensitive responses in health programmes.

Since its founding in 2002, more than 60 governments, private foundations, corporationsand individuals have contributed more than US$ 11 billion to support the Global Fund toFight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. The Global Fund's total funding need for 2008-2010 is US$ 12-18 billion. This money will be used to support existing grants and also to fund new ones to fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.



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