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Volume 401: debated on Tuesday 18 March 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much her Department gave in 2002–03 (a) to prevent the spread of HIV and AIDS and (b) to treat people with AIDS; and if she will make a statement. [103095]

My Department's HIV/AIDS effort is focused on several key areas. Bilaterally our funds are aimed primarily at supporting national policies and strategies through multisectoral HIV/AIDS plans. These strategies cover the continuum from prevention, treatment, care to impact mitigation. It is therefore not possible to aggregate the funding in the manner requested. The total of our spending on HIV/AIDS-related bilateral work for 2002–03 is not yet available. In 2001–02 our bilateral expenditure in this area was over £200 million.Since 1997, we have committed £1.5 billion to help developing countries put in place and strengthen effective health care systems which will enable the poor to benefit from lower priced and better drugs to treat HIV/AIDS.The Government's support for initiatives such as the Access to Medicines Working Group and Global Fund against AIDS, TB and Malaria is also facilitating increased access for poor people to HIV/AIDS treatment.

:: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what estimate her Department has made of the income support needed by HIV and AIDS households in (a) Zambia, (b) Lesotho, (c) Malawi, (d) Mozambique, (e) Swaziland and (f) Zimbabwe, and if she will make a statement. [103094]

Zambia, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Swaziland and Zimbabwe have been deeply affected by a food security crisis brought about in part by an HIV/AIDS epidemic in the region. This crisis has increased the number of people in poverty and deepened the poverty of those already poor. There are significant challenges in establishing and targeting households that are infected or affected by HIV/AIDS, not least because of the stigma attached to the disease. There is also significant variation of need and general agreement that income support per se would therefore not be the most effective assistance.Vulnerability assessments for all six countries show that HIV/AIDS affected households suffer from depletion of assets, reduced income, and increased expenditure on health and funerals, and that the presence of orphans decreases food security and other resources in already stressed households. HIV/AIDS affected households need support to counteract these impacts. This could be provided through home-based care that included community support, basic health care, sufficient food, help with income generation and assistance with access to education. DFID is working with governments in the region to reduce the vulnerability of poor households by improving rural livelihoods, strengthening community safety nets and delivering more and better basic services, taking particular account of the needs of households affected by HIV/AIDS.

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what her Department is doing to meet the targets adopted in the Declaration of Commitment signed at the UN General Assembly Special Session on HIV and AIDS in June 2001; what progress is being made in meeting the targets; and if she will make a statement. [103110]

My Department's entire HIV/AIDS programme is aimed at helping to achieve the targets agreed in the United Nations' Declaration of Commitment on HIV/AIDS.UNAIDS is the agency tasked with measuring progress against the targets in the Declaration of Commitment. The United Nations Secretary-General will report annually based on national reports and other data collated by the United Nations. The Secretary-General's report for 2003 will be particularly important as many of the strategies for national action are due to be in place by the end of this year.In his report on progress towards implementation of the Declaration of Commitment presented to the 57

th Session of the General Assembly in 2002, the Secretary-General noted that while political commitment had increased and additional resources were devoted to HIV/AIDS, the scale of country level activities did not yet match the epidemic. In addition, while most countries had developed national AIDS strategies,

implementation had been slow. Also, nearly one in two countries lacked a strategy for care and support of children orphaned or made vulnerable by the epidemic.

Future reports are expected to highlight progress made, identify gaps in knowledge and action, and will emphasise strategies for tackling the epidemic in the future.