President Bush Has Significantly Increased Aid to Africa, Including Funding for HIV/AIDS, Malaria, According to New Statistics
U.S. humanitarian and development aid to Africa under the Bush administration has increased from $1.4 billion annually in 2001 to $4 billion annually, according to statistics released recently by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the Washington Post reports (Fletcher, Washington Post, 12/31/06). In addition, President Bush has demonstrated a "growing commitment" to combating HIV/AIDS and malaria in Africa, London's Independent reports. According to U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Bush "should be known for the largest single investment in AIDS and malaria, the biggest health investment of any government" (Usborne, Independent, 1/2). According to Rep. Donald Payne (D-N.J.), the "evangelical community raised the awareness" of HIV/AIDS to Bush. He added, "When the Bush administration came in, HIV and AIDS were not an overwhelming priority. Now we have seen a total metamorphosis." Egypt, Ethiopia, Sudan and Uganda are among the world's top 10 recipients of aid from the U.S, and U.S. trade with Africa has doubled since 2001, the Post reports. In addition, Bush recently pledged to increase humanitarian and development aid to the continent to almost $9 billion by 2010. White House aides and independent analysts attribute Bush's increased commitment to Africa to the widespread humanitarian crises on the continent, as well as Africa's growing importance "in a world increasingly linked by economics and terrorist threats," according to the Post. However, some advocates say that business prospects in Africa are driving Bush's interest (Washington Post, 12/31/06).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.