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The Global Fund Board meets in Arusha, Tanzania

17 November 2004

Board to Hear Four African Presidents on Need for Funding to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria. Decision on Timing for New Round of Grants

Arusha, Tanzania – The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria’s ninth board meeting will focus on how increased investments can drive back the three pandemics in one of the world’s worst-affected regions. In its opening session, the Board will hear the views of four East African presidents on the need for increased investments in health if these countries are to maintain economic growth and social development.

Presidents Benjamin W. Mkapa of Tanzania, Yoweri Museveni of Uganda, Mwai Kibaki of Kenya, and Paul Kagame of Rwanda will address Board members at a high-level session today. They will be joined by UK Secretary of State for International Development, Hilary Benn.

At the top of the Board’s agenda is a decision on when to call for a new round of grant applications which would be submitted for approval next year. Board members have to balance the clear need for increased funding for programs to fight the three diseases against the Global Fund’s current resource constraints.

Since it was created in 2002, the Global Fund has approved proposals worth US$ 3 billion over two years to 314 grants in 128 countries. Of this, $570 million goes to the countries of the Lake Victoria Region. Board members have spent the previous four days visiting Global Fund-supported programs in Kenya, Tanzania and Rwanda.

The Global Fund Board consists of nine members representing donors and ten members representing countries and organizations eligible as recipients of Global Fund financing. In addition, there are four non-voting members, representing the World Health Organization, UNAIDS, the World Bank and the Swiss government. The Board approves funding, the Global Fund’s budget and operational procedures, and sets overall policies.

The Board meeting will conclude on Saturday 20th November 2004.

The Global Fund is a unique global public-private partnership dedicated to attracting and disbursing additional resources to prevent and treat AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. This partnership between governments, civil society, the private sector and affected communities represents a new approach to international health financing. The Fund works in close collaboration with other bilateral and multilateral organizations to supplement existing efforts dealing with the three diseases.

Apart from a high standard of technical quality, the Global Fund attaches no conditions to any of its grants. It is not an implementing agency, instead relying on local ownership and planning to ensure that new resources are directed to programs on the frontline of this global effort to reach those most in need. Its performance-based approach to grant-making is designed to ensure that funds are used efficiently and create real change for people and communities. All programs are monitored by independent organizations contracted by the Global Fund to ensure that its funding is having an impact in the fight against the three pandemics.

Further information can be obtained from Tim Clark, Global Fund External Relations, tim.clark@theglobalfund.org or +41 (0)22 791 17 68.

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