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HIV/AIDs

Volume 722: debated on Tuesday 8 November 2022

The UK is committed to working in partnership to deliver on the global AIDS strategy and ending the epidemic of AIDS by 2030. We provide substantial funding to the World Health Organisation, UNAIDS, the Robert Carr Fund and the Global Fund. Together, we are working towards ensuring that all can access the prevention and treatment services needed to ensure progress on HIV/AIDS.

I welcome the Minister back to his place. Globally, the number of new infections dropped by only 3.6% between 2020 and 2021, which is the smallest decline since 2016. The data shows that it disproportionately impacts adolescent young women and girls. We must do and can do more to help those girls if we are truly to end new HIV transmissions. What plans does the Minister have to ensure that the Global Fund receives a pledge, so it can carry out vital programmes if we are to end new transmissions of HIV by 2030?

The hon. Lady is absolutely right about the critical importance of the Global Fund’s work. The Global Fund has saved more than 50 million lives. It was very heavily reformed in 2010. Two thirds of the money goes towards the Commonwealth and it is brilliantly effective. She can rest assured that we are looking very carefully at the pledge we are going to make.

I welcome the Minister for Development to his place. As a Back Bencher, he spoke passionately and frankly in holding his party to its manifesto commitments on international development, and I applaud that. Indeed, in July he said:

“I urge the Government to ensure that we are as generous as possible on the replenishment of the fund”.—[Official Report, 6 July 2022; Vol. 717, c. 922.]

Yet today, under his ministerial role, not a single penny has been pledged to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. I just heard him say on the record that it will continue to be supported substantially, so he may wish to correct that. Words are deeds, so will the Minister put money where his mouth is and join the other G7 countries by making a late donation to the Global Fund and delivering what his party promised?

I can assure the hon. Gentleman that our support throughout the whole House for the Global Fund is absolute and intense. Discussions are ongoing on the subject of money. I hope very much it will not be too long before I can come before the House and answer his very specific questions on both the money and the results that that money will achieve.