Japan Pledges Additional $500M to Global Fund
Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi on Thursday announced that the country has pledged an additional $500 million to the Global Fund To Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, the AP/Yahoo! Asia News reports (AP/Yahoo! Asia News, 6/30). Koizumi made the announcement at a symposium in Tokyo on East Asia's response to HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria and ahead of next week's Group of Eight summit of industrialized nations in Gleneagles, Scotland (Reuters AlertNet, 6/29). The $500 million likely will be dispersed over several years, according to a Japanese foreign ministry official (Agence France-Presse, 6/29). Japan already has pledged $341 million and contributed $327.7 million to the Global Fund (Global Fund Web site, 6/30). "Japan is setting a great example for other large countries," Global Fund Executive Director Richard Feachem said, adding, "We have a global responsibility to drive back these diseases and keep the promises the rich countries have made to the millions who live in the shadow of these diseases around the world. Japan has shown it is taking this responsibility seriously" (Global Fund release, 6/30). Last week, Japanese officials announced that the country will provide $5 billion over five years to help African nations fight infectious diseases, such as HIV/AIDS and malaria. The initiative aims to help developing countries achieve U.N. Millennium Development Goal targets and is a successor to Japan's Okinawa Infectious Diseases Initiative, which was established in 2000 to fight the spread of diseases worldwide. The new initiative will provide funds for medications, vaccines, clean water, health care infrastructure development and medical training. Japan also will provide malaria drugs and mosquito nets and condoms to curb the spread of HIV (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 6/22).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.