Global Fund Thanks President Hollande

05 November 2013

PARIS – President Francois Hollande of France met today with the Chair of the Board of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, Dr. Nafsiah Mboi, to discuss joint commitment fighting disease with strong financial and moral support from France.

Dr. Nafsiah Mboi told the President that France’s distinguished leadership in global health has made a tremendous difference in the lives of millions of people around the world.   

“It is my pleasure to thank you for the solidarity and leadership France has shown the global family in the continuing effort to contain AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria and to improve global public health,” said Dr. Nafsiah Mboi at the meeting in the President’s official residence, the Elysée Palace.

“We are immensely grateful to the French government and French people for sustained and generous financial support of the Global Fund,” said Dr. Nafsiah Mboi. “The knowledge and skills to control and ultimately defeat these diseases is reaching the far corners of the globe, with the help of France.”

Dr. Nafsiah Mboi was joined by Mireille Guigaz, the Vice Chair of the Board of the Global Fund, as well as Pascal Canfin, France’s Minister of Development, and Mark Dybul, the Global Fund’s Executive Director.

President Hollande said he wanted France to strengthen cooperation with the Global Fund, both at its headquarters in Geneva and in the field by stepping up involvement of the French diplomatic service, notably in francophone countries.

President Hollande today reaffirmed France’s strong financial commitment to the Global Fund despite tight budgetary constraints, saying that France will contribute €1.08 billion (US$1.4 billion) to the Global Fund for the 2014-2016 period, consistent with an announcement in July.

“The President of the Republic expressed his wishes that the replenishment conference of the Global Fund on December 3 in Washington will be a success,” said a statement by the French President’s office.

The statement cited France’s role as a pioneer in innovative financing programs such as UNITAID, a global health initiative which France helped to establish, funded mostly from a levy on airline tickets.

“The eradication of AIDS and tuberculosis and malaria requires vigorous and coordinated international mobilization,” Minister Canfin said.

“France reaffirms its determination in this fight, in which the Global Fund is one of the main tools.  We are the first generation of political leaders who can contribute to bringing the three pandemics to an end.”

Mireille Guigaz indicated that “with the Global Fund, UNITAID, GAVI as well as French scientific and technical expertise and multiple firms acting in the public health sector, France as a wonderful set of tools to impact for the fight against the three diseases."

France is the second largest contributor overall to the Global Fund after the United States, and has donated more than $3.6 billion to the Global Fund since its inception in 2002.

France has also extended the reach and impact of its investments in global health by working through the Global Fund. Since 2011, up to five per cent of France’s contribution to the Global Fund has been earmarked for capacity-building activities in Francophone countries aimed at improving the effectiveness and health impact of Global Fund grants.

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