France commits US$1.4 billion to the Global Fund

20 September 2010

First nation to pledge new funding for 2011-2013 

Geneva, 20 September 2010 - President Nicolas Sarkozy today committed €1.080 billion (US$1.4 billion) to The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, making France the first country to pledge funding to The Global Fund for the coming three year period.

France is already the largest donor to The Global Fund after the United States, with an accumulated contribution of €2.905 billion since the organization’s creation in 2002.

“Through this announcement, France has demonstrated both leadership and vision,” said United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who chairs The Global Fund’s Replenishment for 2011-2013. “France is setting a strong example for others to increase their commitments to The Global Fund. The replenishment of The Global Fund is a test of global solidarity. Through President Sarkozy’s announcement, France has shown strong solidarity with the women, men and children around the world who are most in need of treatment, protection and care.”

Despite the challenging global economic environment, the contribution announced today is the largest ever financial pledge from France to the fight against the three pandemics. The pledge reaffirms France’s longstanding commitment to seeing access to treatment and protection against disease as a right for all, regardless of geography or income. France was instrumental in the creation of The Global Fund eight years ago and is an active member of The Global Fund’s Board as well as an on-going provider of support in countries where Global Fund-supported programs are implemented.

“Through the nearly 6 million lives saved and the progress made during the past few years in driving back the pandemics, we have created hope among thousands of health workers that today’s waiting list will become tomorrow’s patients, and among millions more people that they can live lives free from the threat of death from infectious diseases,” said Michel Kazatchkine, Executive Director of The Global Fund. “Through the President's announcement today, France is nourishing this hope. If other countries follow suit, we will be able to achieve or even exceed several of the targets within the health-related Millennium Goals.”

The Global Fund – which finances programs based on proposals submitted from 144 eligible applicant countries – has outlined funding scenarios of between US$13 billion and US$20 billion needed for the coming three years. Given The Global Fund’s large share of global financing for health – it channels two thirds of all international funding for combatting malaria and TB and nearly a quarter of funding for fighting AIDS, as well as being the largest multi-lateral channel for efforts to strengthen health systems – the success or failure to secure new funding for the coming three years will have a significant impact on the world’s ability to achieve the health-related Millennium Development Goals by 2015.

“This is a pivotal year,” said Michel Kazatchkine. “It’s the year where we will know whether we will collectively reach or fail in our efforts to reach the MDGs. Despite the difficult global economic climate, we need long-standing donor countries to increase their contributions to The Global Fund significantly, new donors to come to the table with pledges, and to expand our efforts to secure additional, innovative ways of funding international health efforts. ”

More than 40 donor countries, private foundations, and corporations will meet in New York on October 5 to replenish The Global Fund���s resources for the 2011-2013 period.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy and First Lady Carla Bruni-Sarkozy with Global Fund Executive Director Michel Kazatchkine and UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibe at the United Nations, New York. Photo by Brad Hamilton/UNAIDS.

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