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Kaiser/UNAIDS Study Finds Dip in Donor Government Commitments for AIDS In 2013

Actual Disbursements in 2013 Increased 8% As Some Funds from Earlier Years Were Spent

MELBOURNE, Australia – Donor governments in 2013 committed US$8.1 billion in new funding to support the AIDS response in low- and middle-income countries, down 3 percent from 2012, finds a new report from the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) released in advance of the 2014 International AIDS Conference.

The drop in new commitments occurred even though actual disbursements for HIV increased to $8.5 billion in 2013, up 8 percent from 2012.  The increase in disbursements was driven largely by the accelerated release of prior-year commitments by the United States, the world’s largest donor, the report finds.  More recent U.S. budgets, however, committed fewer resources for this purpose.

“Going forward, it’s uncertain whether the U.S. can maintain this level of funding for global HIV,” said Kaiser Family Foundation Vice President Jen Kates, director of global health and HIV policy. “Other countries, including donors and recipients, may need to increase their contributions to sustain the global effort.”

“Ending the AIDS epidemic will only be possible if donors and countries most affected by HIV remain steadfast in scaling-up funding over the long term,” said Luiz Loures, Deputy Executive Director, UNAIDS. “Commitments need to be made to securing funding for quality HIV prevention efforts and to assuring life-long access to antiretroviral therapy for everyone in need.”

In 2013, the U.S. government disbursed a total of US$5.6 billion towards the AIDS response in low- and middle-income countries and to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (Global Fund), up US$600 million (12%) from US$5 billion in 2012.

In addition to the U.S., four of the 14 donor governments assessed – Australia, Denmark, France, and the U.K. – increased total assistance for HIV in 2013. Four donor governments decreased funding in 2013: Canada, Italy, Japan, and the Netherlands. In the case of the Netherlands, the decrease is due to a shift in support from bilateral HIV funding to the Global Fund. For five donor governments – Germany, Ireland, Norway, Sweden, and the European Commission – support remained flat.

The United States accounted for nearly two-thirds (66.4%) of total disbursements (bilateral and multilateral) from donor governments. The United Kingdom was the second largest donor (10%), followed by France (4.8%), Germany (3.4%), and Denmark (2.3%).

The new report, produced as a partnership between the Kaiser Family Foundation and UNAIDS, provides the latest data available on donor funding based on data provided by governments who are members of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development’s Development Assistance Committee. It includes their bilateral assistance to low- and middle-income countries and contributions to the Global Fund as well as UNITAID.

The full analysis is available online.