World leaders pledge billions to fight AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria
The Global Fund to fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria on Wednesday reached $14.25 billion pledged as world leaders seek to fight the killer diseases after progress was knocked off course by the Covid-19 pandemic.
US President Joe Biden, who hosted the conference in New York on the sidelines of the annual high-level meeting of the United Nations General Assembly, said the funding is crucial to combating the diseases.
"This is an investment that will save another 20 million lives, reduce mortality from these diseases another 64% in the next four years," Biden said.
The United States had previously said it would pledge $6 billion for the next funding cycle.
The fund, a public/private alliance based in Geneva, is seeking $18 billion for its next three-year funding cycle from governments, civil society and the private sector. Before Wednesday's conference, it had already raised more than a third of the total.
The Global Fund said the $14.25 billion figure is likely to increase as more donations are expected.
Canada would contribute C$1.21 billion ($898.9 million) to a global health fund to fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria, and support health services that have been disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic, the Canadian government said in a statement on Wednesday.
The funding commitment to the Global Fund is a 30% increase over Canada's last pledge to the initiative and brings the country's total contributions to the fund to nearly C$4 billion.
French President Emmanuel Macron pledged another 300 million euros, bringing France's total contribution for the funding period to 1.6 billion euros.
In its 2022 report, the fund said the reach of its treatment and prevention efforts rebounded last year after declining for the first time in almost 20 years in 2020, but the world is still not on track to defeat these diseases.
The fund estimates its work has saved around 50 million lives since its inception in 2002.