Press Releases

    7 September 2005

    Significant Increases in Resources Needed, Secretary-General Tells London Replenishment Meeting of Global Fund to Fight AIDS

    NEW YORK, 6 September (UN Headquarters) -- Following is today's statement by UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan to the replenishment meeting of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria in London:

    I am very happy to be with you today.  This is a crucial meeting in the life of the Global Fund.

    Let me thank our hosts, Hilary Benn and the Government of the United Kingdom, for their excellent work in organizing this meeting.  Let me also thank the Governments of Italy and Sweden for hosting the previous replenishment gatherings.

    A special thanks also goes to Co-Chair, Sven Sandström, for his energetic and skilful efforts to make the replenishment process a success; and to Richard Feachem, Executive Director of the Fund.

    I am delighted that we are joined by distinguished Ministers and high-level officials from so many countries.  I am equally happy to see representatives of civil society, foundations and the private sector.  You all have an indispensable role to play.

    The Global Fund was created as an expression of a genuine international commitment to defeat HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria -- a commitment that has become stronger in the first years of this new century.  And in that short period, the Fund has become a leading financier of programmes to fight the three pandemics.

    The pledges made here today will go a long way towards ensuring the longer-term sustainability of the Global Fund.  They will help it plan for the future.  They will help countries establish comprehensive programmes to fight HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.

    And they will provide all of us with an important source of hope and encouragement for the future:  hope that we can make major progress in reversing the spread of HIV/ AIDS and other infectious diseases.

    So let me express my profound gratitude to the countries that are making new pledges today.  There have been announcements of significant increases in contributions from several donors, and I look forward to further good news during the course of the day.

    At the same time, we know that we must look at these commitments in the context of the broader needs for resources in the struggle against the three diseases, especially HIV/AIDS.

    We need to see significant increases, both in bilateral funding and in resources from the most affected countries themselves.  Only then can we cover the cost of prevention, treatment and care, as well as the necessary investments in [building] infrastructure and training of personnel.

    But is not enough to raise more money.  It is equally important to ensure that the money is made to work for the people who need it most.  That requires us to work for better coordination among donors.

    On that score, I am delighted that you considered in one of your sessions yesterday the recommendations of the Global Task Team on Improving AIDS Coordination among Multilateral Institutions and International Donors.  I thank all stakeholders and partners who have participated in the work of the Global Task Team.  It has been a highly valuable example of UN reform in action and at its best.  I also welcome similar efforts to improve coordination in the fight against tuberculosis and malaria.

    Such efforts are crucial if we are to focus on implementation in the years ahead.  We need to ensure that programmes are carried out effectively at the country level, so that long-term financial resources become available.  We need to prove to the world that global health is a sound investment.

    I am therefore particularly pleased with the progress made by the Global Fund in assessing its performance and results, as well as those of its grant recipients.  Regular reports on those assessments will build trust and confidence, and thus help mobilize additional resources.

    As you know, next week, heads of State and Government will meet in New York for the 2005 World Summit.  This is expected to be one of the largest gatherings of leaders ever.  I believe we will have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to address some of the most pressing challenges of our era.

    It will be a test of our ability to act on the understanding that development, security and human rights are not only ends in themselves -- they reinforce each other, and depend on each other.  That in our interconnected world, the human family cannot enjoy security without development, cannot enjoy development without security, and can enjoy neither without respect for human rights.

    Today, we are here because we know that the Global Fund has a vital role to play.  I am grateful to every one of you for your engagement, and I count on your support in the crucial time ahead.

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