30 April 2002
$7 Million Awarded to Tackle Killer Diseases
ABABA - Ethiopia has been awarded more than US $7 million
as part of the Fund to tackle diseases, backed by computer
billionaire Bill Gates.
award is part of a multi-million dollar package announced
in New York recently, and which gives a large proportion of
the money to African countries.
money will be used to fight AIDS, tuberculosis (TB) and malaria
- three of the world's biggest killers. In Africa alone, a
total of US $641 million was requested to help fight the diseases
under the first grant awards announced by the Fund.
Gates, who founded the computer giant Microsoft, has pledged
US $100 million to the Fund for AIDS and health.
The Fund was set up in June 2001 after a summit organised
by the United Nations, and specifically targets the three
killer diseases. They are the cause of almost six million
deaths a year - 10 percent of global deaths.
Without the Fund, total expenditures to fight HIV/AIDS,
TB, and malaria in the developing world would be approximately
US $1.6 billion in 2002. But the Fund has helped increase
resources by US $700-800 million - effectively increasing
global spending on these epidemics by 50 percent in its first
year of operation.
58 countries have applied for funding from the Fund,
which is an independent, public-private partnership.