Germany pledges $1.3bn to UNAIDS

Germany has decided to increase its financial contribution to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome), Tuberculosis and Malaria by 30 per cent, the country’s Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development Svenja Schulze said here.

Between 2023 and 2025, the country will pay 1.3 billion euros ($1.3 billion) into the fund, Schulze told participants in an international conference of civil society organisations here, Xinhua news agency reported.

“There have recently been considerable setbacks due to the pandemic,” Schulze said. Lockdowns, overburdened hospitals and interrupted supply chains have caused treatments of the three diseases to be suspended with “drastic consequences for those affected.”

The conference is held in the run-up to the Global Fund Replenishment Conference in New York on September 18 and 19. The aim is to collect at least $18 billion to continue existing programs and adapt them to new developments.

The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/ AIDS (UNAIDS) welcomed Germany’s pledge. The announcement is a “significant step” towards reaching the fund’s financial target, UNAIDS said in a statement.

The United Nations aims to end AIDS as a public health threat by 2030. Since the first cases of HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) were reported more than 35 years ago, 78 million people have become infected with HIV and 35 million have died from AIDS-related illnesses, according to the programme.

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