Xinhua News Agency (01.28.12) - Monday, January 30, 2012
Rather than remain dependent on donor money, African leaders
must look for alternative ways to fund a sustained response to
the HIV/AIDS epidemic, the executive director of UNAIDS said
Saturday in Addis Ababa. Michel Sidibe, who is in Ethiopia for
the 18th African Union summit, warned that the continuing
global economic downturn likely will reduce further the money
available to fight the disease.
"Africa is too dependent on external resources, especially for
the AIDS response," said Sidibe, who identified this
dependence as "a source of great risk and potential
instability. The status quo cannot be sustained. It is time
for a new development paradigm that is developed and owned by
the leaders of Africa."
UNAIDS estimates that two-thirds of the money spent to fight
AIDS in Africa comes from international funding sources. The
vast majority of antiretrovirals used to treat HIV in Africa
are imported from generic manufacturers.
The agency also estimates that Africa will need $11 billion-
$12 billion to combat AIDS by 2015, that is $3 billion-$4
billion more than is being spent currently. In addition to
leveraging public-private partnerships, UNAIDS suggested taxes
on tobacco, alcohol, and cell phones as ways to raise the