Australia Pledges Additional $3.8M to Global Fund
Australia will contribute an additional $3.8 million to the Global Fund To Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, Minister of Foreign Affairs Alexander Downer announced last week at the 7th International Congress on AIDS in Asia and the Pacific in Japan, IRIN/AllAfrica.com reports (IRIN/AllAfrica.com, 7/5). The announcement of additional funds follows the country's pledge in June to contribute an additional $38.2 million to the fund over the next three years (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 6/8). Downer said HIV/AIDS in the Asia-Pacific region needs to be tackled aggressively, like is being done in Africa. More than 8.2 million HIV-positive people live in the region (AAP/Sydney Morning Herald, 7/2). The new pledge brings Australia's overall contribution to the Global Fund for 2005 to about $15 million and its three-year commitment to $56.4 million. The fund in a statement said the new pledge will help close the organization's 2005 funding gap of $700 million. The Global Fund estimates it needs a total of $2.3 billion this year to meet current commitments and new grants. However, the total amount pledged so far for this year totals $1.6 billion (Global Fund release, 7/5).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.