THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
December 18, 2000
STATEMENT OF THE UNITED STATES AND THE EUROPEAN UNION
ON COMMUNICABLE DISEASES IN AFRICA
Washington, December 18, 2000
At the Queluz Summit on May 31, 2000 the U.S. and EU made a commitment
to help stem and roll back the spread of HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis
in Africa, and to address their severe economic, social and personal
consequences. The scope of the problem requires a multi-faceted approach
and the mobilisation of significant resources. As proof of this commitment,
the U.S. and EU have dramatically increased financial resources dedicated
to combating these scourges. Together we are now waging the battle against
these diseases on all of the major fronts.
The U.S. and EU agree that the response to HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and
malaria must be placed within a broad multisectoral framework of
development aiming at the overall objective of alleviating poverty and to
ensure a lasting impact of any specific action to combat HIV/AIDS, malaria
and tuberculosis. The U.S. and EU call upon countries to address and
incorporate fully the health and development implications of HIV/AIDS,
tuberculosis and malaria in the elaboration of their poverty reduction
strategies and programs.
The U.S. and EU plan to coordinate among the appropriate institutions
and organisations at the global and regional level in order to ensure that
all aspects of the response are endorsed by relevant stakeholders.
The U.S. and EU are working to ensure that governments, institutions
and civil society, including NGOs and the private sector, fully participate
in these efforts.
Diplomatic Cooperation in Africa
The U.S. and EU participate together in donor coordination groups across
Africa, assessing local needs and capacities and developing diplomatic and
public awareness strategies. U.S. and EU diplomats have successfully
encouraged African leaders to speak openly about the threat of HIV/AIDS, to
set national priorities, to establish high level governmental coordinating
mechanisms, to establish broad health sector and action plans to strengthen
regional, national and local capacity to deliver health services and
treatment, and to commit resources. We are making great strides in ensuring
that our diplomatic activities are responsive to the needs and priorities
of host countries, and complement the activities of other donor partners.
? Regular high-level coordination involving the U.S. and EU, other
donors and host governments has been established in several African
countries. Similar coordination is proposed throughout sub-Saharan Africa.
Development Assistance Cooperation
The U.S. and the EU are working together in planning and implementing
country activities that are responsive to the needs and priorities of
countries and regions. This assistance is being placed within national and
regional health and development frameworks.
? The U.S. and the EU are collaborating in sub-Saharan African countries
to support health policies and activities aiming at preventing the
expansion of the diseases and at caring for and supporting people with
HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis and those close to them.
? The U.S. and the EU are enhancing their support for national health
and other sector plans and policies. This support can take the form of a
general support, either direct or through budget, or by supporting specific
elements of those plans and policies for combating HIV/AIDS, malaria and
tuberculosis, for example training, provision of commodities such as
condoms and test kits, and improving access to interventions that reduce
mother-to-infant HIV transmission.
? Under the enhanced HIPC initiative, the U.S. and the EU will work
together in close collaboration with national authorities of selected
countries to identify mechanisms for the utilisation of debt relief towards
comprehensive social programs responding to the challenge of HIV/AIDS,
tuberculosis and malaria.
? The U.S. and the EU will set up a working group to identify and take
advantage of their respective comparative advantages in supporting
procurement and the provision of technical assistance.
The U.S. and the EU jointly support multilateral HIV/AIDS initiatives
such as UNAIDS and the International Partnership against AIDS in Africa.
The U.S. and the EU continue to support the Roll Back Malaria Initiative
and the Multilateral Initiative on Malaria, as well as coordinating our
assistance to the Stop TB Initiative and the TB Coalition.
The U.S. and the EU support new innovative partnerships to increase
the availability and affordability of global public goods.
The U.S. and the EU agree that to combat these diseases, the
international scientific community needs to work together. Long-term
investments in the full range of scientific endeavour are necessary to
accelerate the development and evaluation of new and affordable vaccines
? The U.S. and the EU are enlarging public investment in research and
development activities focused on confronting the three communicable
diseases, and call upon the private sector to follow this example.
? The U.S. and the EU will work together to strengthen the coordination
of research projects and to ensure that the coordinated efforts contribute
to strengthening sustainable capacities at local, national and regional
levels in Africa.
Access to affordable drugs, vaccines and other commodities
Better access to affordable pharmaceuticals and commodities to prevent
or to treat the three communicable diseases is crucial. The U.S. and the EU
will seek to assist in setting up effective infrastructures and will take
steps to make key medicines and commodities more affordable and available.
African leaders' commitment to improving health systems is essential to the
success of these efforts, and we stand ready to provide technical
assistance in this regard.
? The U.S. and the EU urge the pharmaceutical industry to make drugs for
HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis more affordable, particularly for the
poorest countries. We reaffirm the importance of providing more affordable
pricing and strict compliance with safety and quality assurance laws and
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