Global Fund Approves $1B in New Grants
The board of the Global Fund To Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria on Monday announced that it has approved 73 new grants worth $1.1 billion over the next two years, the AFP/Yahoo! Health reports. The Global Fund approved the grants during its 16th board meeting in Kunming, China, a statement said. Forty-eight percent of the total funding goes to HIV/AIDS activities, 42% for malaria and 10% for TB, the fund said. The statement also said that 66% of the projects are in Africa, 13% in Asia, 13% in the Middle East and 5% in Latin America (AFP/Yahoo! Health, 11/12). More than 80% of the grants will go to low-income countries.
The Global Fund Board also approved $130 million for renewal of five grants that are nearing their five-year expiration dates. According to the fund, the seventh round of grants brings the fund's portfolio to $10 billion in 136 countries. About 50% of the proposals submitted for round seven were approved, up from an average of 40% during the previous six rounds. The West Bank and Gaza won approval for their first grant to support an HIV prevention program (Global Fund release, 11/12).
The new grants increased the fund's grant allocation 32% higher than the $846 million initially planned for 2007. The fund has said it needs between $12 billion and $18 billion to pay for existing programs and to launch new ones between 2008 and 2010 (AFP/Yahoo! Health, 11/12).
"Global Fund-supported programs are already making an impact against AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria in many countries around the world," Rajat Gupta, chair of the Global Fund Board, said, adding, "This is the largest funding round in the Global Fund's history. The board is pleased with the strength and high level of ambition of the new grants and is looking forward to scaling up in the fight against the three diseases." Michel Kazatchkine, executive-director of the Global Fund, said, "These new grants show that need is increasingly turned into high-quality demand for resources," adding, "This is a trend we must develop further" (Global Fund release, 11/12).