HC Deb 13 March 2003 vol 401 cc353-4W
Mrs. Spelman

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what meetings she has had with pharmaceutical companies to discuss AIDS in developing countries. [102738]

Clare Short

My Department continues to give greater priority to prevention, but we also place great emphasis on reducing the personal, social and economic impact of illness and disease caused by HIV/AIDS. The fight against HIV/AIDS has to incorporate effective public health responses that engage in education, prevention, care and support, impact mitigation and related development concurrently. For any of these programmes to be successfully implemented, broad multi-sectoral approaches are crucial.

I have regularly met representatives of GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), AstraZeneca and Association of British Pharmaceutical Industries (ABPI), as a result of their involvement in the high level working group on increasing access to essential medicines for AIDS, TB and Malaria.

Officials from my Department have been in extensive dialogue with representatives of these companies and MERCK, a member of the US PHARMA industry association, around taking forward the reports' recommendations in a number of initial countries. We will continue to have a dialogue with them and other key actors in the pharmaceutical industry in the lead up to the G8 summit in Evian later this year.

Mrs. Spelman

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what her Department's strategy is for tackling AIDS. [102812]

Clare Short

My Department's HIV/AIDS strategy focuses on the following key areas:

  • building political leadership;
  • building national capacity;
  • tackling the underlying causes of vulnerability;
  • maximising the contribution of all sectors;
  • supporting work across the prevention, treatment, care and impact mitigation continuum;
  • supporting the development of knowledge generation.

A copy of our HIV/AIDS strategy is available in the Library of the House.

Mrs. Spelman

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what her Department is doing to co-ordinate an international strategy for tackling AIDS in the developing world. [102813]

Clare Short

The Declaration of Commitment adopted by 189 delegations at the twenty-sixth Special Session of the United Nations General Assembly in June 2001 sets out a global consensus on action necessary to tackle the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Within this framework, my Department is working in partnership with governments, international agencies, the private sector, NGOs and others to achieve the Millennium Development Goal of combating HIV/AIDS.

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