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on African Ministers of Finance to put HIV/AIDS on the Agenda at
the IMF and WORLD BANK Spring Meetings
African Treatment Access Movement (PATAM)
April 22, 2004
On April 24
-25, 2004, African Ministers of Finance will be convening in Washington
DC for the annual International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank
Spring Meetings to review the two institutions' operations. Given
that the HIV/AIDS epidemic is the greatest threat facing the African
continent today, the members of the PATAM called on all African
Finance Minister to consider the HIV/AIDS as an issue affecting
all other critical developmental issues. PATAM is an Africa-wide
movement advocating for access to HIV/AIDS treatment and other essential
Through an open
letter to their respective Ministers of Finance, PATAM members urged
African governments to support initiatives that will contain and
reverse the steady march of the epidemic. PATAM emphasised the important
of governments enhancing the current efforts by the World Bank and
IMF against HIV/AIDS but rejecting those initiatives that hamper
access to life-saving and affordable medicines for people living
"We charge you
[Ministers of Finance] with this responsibility and remain ready
to offer any support necessarily but also reserve the right to use
all tools available to us should we feel that you do not represent
the interests of all peoples in our countries. Millions of lives
are at stake!" .
PATAM called on the Ministers of Finance to use the Spring Meetings
- Ensure that
urgent attention is paid to building the internal capacity of
African countries to marshal their own resources against HIV/AIDS.
- Reject fiscal
conditions that imply a decline in additional donated revenues
for HIV/AIDS. · Demand full debt cancellation.
- Support efforts
to highlight transparency, accountability and representation in
the IMF and World Bank.
financial plans and budgets that focus on developing the capacity
of African countries.
the 42 million people living with HIV/AIDS worldwide, 28 million
are in Africa. The HIV and AIDS epidemic is no longer just a health
issue, but one that affects the social, cultural, political and
economic environment of African countries. National governments
are taking steps to respond to the epidemic, yet much more needs
to be done.
the open letter
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