HL Deb 20 July 2004 vol 664 cc10-1WS
Baroness Amos

My right honourable friend the Secretary of State for International Development has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.

I have placed in the Libraries of both Houses copies of Taking Action: The UK's Strategy for tackling HIV and AIDS in the developing world, which I published today.

This paper is being published by the Department for International Development (DfID) but the following government Departments worked with DfID to help to produce it: the Department of Health, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, HM Treasury, the Department of Trade and Industry, the Patent Office, the Inland Revenue, the Ministry of Defence, the Home Office, the Department for Education and Skills and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

AIDS is one of the greatest threats to eradicating poverty and achieving the millennium development goals. Over the past 25 years the number of people affected by HIV has risen dramatically, from the first AIDS cases identified in the 1980s to the 38 million who are living with HIV and AIDS today. Over 20 million people have died. Sub-Saharan Africa has suffered the severest impact: over 25 million people are currently living with HIV and AIDS and 12 million children have been orphaned by AIDS. By 2010 the number of orphans who will have lost parents to AIDS may rise to 18 million. In Asia and Eastern Europe, there is a serious risk of a generalised epidemic unless action is taken now. In all regions, women and young people are particularly vulnerable.

The UK Government are committed to fighting AIDS and reversing the spread of HIV. The challenges facing the world were set out in the UK's Call for Action on HIV/AIDS, published on World AIDS Day last year. Taking Action: The UK's strategy for tackling HIV and AIDS in the developing world sets out how the UK will respond to the challenges by: promoting a comprehensive response to tackle prevention, treatment and care as well as addressing the social impact of AIDS; prioritising the needs of women, young people, including orphans and other children; focusing on human rights, stigma and discrimination; and ensuring that action on AIDS is sustainable in the long term as well as responsive to immediate needs.

As announced in the spending review, the UK Government will commit at least £1.5 billion over the next three years to tackle AIDS in the developing world. Of this, at least £150 million will be dedicated to helping orphans and other children made vulnerable by AIDS, especially in Africa. We will also be doubling our contribution to the Global Fund to fight AIDS, TB and malaria with an additional £77 million over the next three years. This is in addition to extra money for UNAIDS and UNFPA announced in my Written Statement of 6 July.