I am pleased to send greetings to this important gathering of leaders from government, the private sector, civil society and others supporting the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. I thank the United States for hosting.
We are at a crucial turning point. With your support, we have made major advances. Leading economies are providing consistent resources for the response to AIDS, TB and malaria while low- and middle-income countries have also significantly increased domestic expenditures. I welcome this.
At the same time, financing from the international community remains a lifeline for millions of people. We must act with resolve to preserve these gains, which remain fragile. If bed-nets and anti-malarials are not delivered and used in time, malaria will continue to spread. Drug-resistant tuberculosis is on the increase. An AIDS-free world is in sight but success depends on our unwavering resolve to bring treatment to the nearly three in ten children and adults who still do not have access to it. We need to work smarter and better to truly end these infectious diseases.
The Global Fund is an essential institution in this battle. It is delivering results with a commitment to reform. As part of this process, the Global Fund has worked even more effectively with other organizations and groups. I am especially encouraged that the Global Fund and the UN development system, particularly UNAIDS, continue to deepen their collaboration. This model of partnership can ensure that strong health and community systems can deliver results and address other problems including maternal and child mortality.
This Fourth Replenishment comes at a propitious moment. Financing committed now will straddle the 2015 deadline for achieving the Millennium Development Goals, sending a clear signal that we will do everything possible to reach our targets.
I applaud all countries and partners that support the Global Fund. As the world continues to grapple with the effects of the 2008 financial crisis, I commend governments and others for stepping up to ensure that progress is preserved.
I urge all stakeholders to continue to demonstrate your unwavering support by making the strongest possible commitment to the Global Fund. This is a morally and financially sound investment in our shared future.