Thèmes et resources
The World Bank’s Commitment to HIV/AIDS in Africa
Politique et stratégies

The World Bank’s Commitment to HIV/AIDS in Africa

African countries must continue to champion HIV prevention efforts to slow and reverse the rate of new HIV infections, and that HIV/AIDS will remain for the foreseeable future an unprecedented economic, social, and human challenge to Sub-Saharan Africa. The region remains the global epicenter of the disease.

According to the report — The World Bank’s Commitment to HIV/AIDS in Africa: Our Agenda for Action, 2007-2011 — for every infected African starting antiretroviral therapy (ART) for the first time, another four to six become newly infected, even as regional figures show falling prevalence in countries such as Kenya, and parts of Botswana, Côte d’ Ivoire, Malawi, and Zimbabwe. About 22.5 million Africans are HIV positive, and AIDS is the leading cause of premature death on the continent, especially among productive young people and women. As a result, some private firms in Southern Africa recruit two workers for every job in anticipation of losing staff to the disease

In laying out its continuing plans to help African countries fight the epidemic, the Bank’s new strategy says that more than 60 percent of people living with HIV in Africa are women, and that young women are six times more likely to be HIV positive than are young men. As a result of the epidemic, an estimated 11.4 million children under age 18 have lost at least one parent.

“With AIDS the largest single cause of premature death in Africa, we can’t talk about better, lasting development there without also committing to stay the course in the long-term fight against the disease,” says Elizabeth Lule, Manager of the World Bank’s AIDS Team for Africa (ACTafrica), whose team consulted widely with African countries, people living with HIV, sister UN agencies, NGOs, private companies and others in devising its new HIV/AIDS strategy for Africa.

The World Bank has mobilized more than $1.5 billion to more than 30 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa to combat the epidemic since 2000. (May 2008)

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