Statement of the Young Global Leaders on World AIDS Day, 2005

We, the

undersigned Young Global Leaders of the World Economic Forum recognize with sadness the senseless death of over 3 million people in 2005 due to HIV/AIDS, a preventable disease.

Today on World AIDS Day, we call on senior global leaders in government, business and the NGO community to dramatically increase their response to this terrible disease by increasing aid, ensuring transparency and accountability, and prioritizing health and education spending.

If the world wants to stop AIDS it must dramatically increase the funding available to fight the disease, and must ensure the money is spent well.

UNAIDS estimates that US$ 8.3 billion was available to fight HIV/AIDS globally from all sources in 2005. Although this is up from US$ 6.1billion in 2004, it leaves a US$ 4 billion shortfall this year. As the pandemic continues to expand, the funding needed to effectively fight AIDS will keep growing – to an estimated US$ 22 billion in 2008.

The world can stop AIDS, but the leaders of today must move from talk to action. As young leaders from around the world, we are concerned that donor and recipient governments are falling short in creating and funding comprehensive plans that will bring prevention, testing and counseling, treatment and care services to the people who need them.

The Young Global Leaders are leading by example. Many of us are active advocates in the fight against HIV/AIDS in our regions. We support the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and work in partnership with the Global Health Initiative of the World Economic Forum.

The world must join forces to rid AIDS from the face of the earth. Any response that is less than this could result in the death of tens if not hundreds of millions of people. History will judge us.

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