US expands commitment to HIV/AIDS response in the region
Left to Right: Dr. Edward Greene, CARICOM Assistant Secretary-General, Human and Social Development; Mr. William Parr, Director for Social Resources Division and Public Health of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community; Ambassador Lolita Applewhaite, CARICOM Deputy Secretary-General; and His Excellency Edwin Carrington, CARICOM Secretary-General.
(CARICOM Secretariat, Turkeyen, Greater Georgetown, Guyana) The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat Headquarters, Turkeyen, Guyana was the venue on Tuesday May 11 for the historic signing of Phase 11 of the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS (PEPFAR)/Caribbean Regional Partnership Agreement Framework between the CARICOM Secretariat and the United States (US) Government.
The Agreement was signed by Her Excellency Lolita Applewhaite, CARICOM Deputy Secretary-General, on behalf of the Secretariat. Ms Karen Williams, Charge d’ Affaires of the United States Embassy in Georgetown, Guyana was the US representative for the signing.
Under PEPFAR 1, Guyana and Haiti were earmarked as the main beneficiaries, but this chapter would see 12 other CARICOM Member States: Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, The Bahamas, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, St. Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Suriname being included as a bloc.
The PEPFAR Caribbean Regional HIV/AIDS Partnership Framework has been harmonised with the Caribbean Regional Framework on Caribbean Regional HIV and AIDS Partnership Framework 2010 – 2014, coordinated by the Pan Caribbean Partnership Against HIV/AIDS (PANCAP). It will see the provision of up to a maximum of US$25 Million annually over the next five years for programmatic cooperation in five areas: prevention, laboratory strengthening, strategic information, capacity building and sustainability.
Ambassador Applewhaite described the Framework Partnership Agreement as “an important milestone in the evolution of PANCAP,” and “another clear signal of its maturing relationship with the foremost international development partners providing support in the field of HIV and AIDS.”
She said the Region was “pleased,” with the new dispensation would see the injection of new funding that was “of vital importance to sustaining the regional response to HIV and AIDS.”
In his remarks, CARICOM Assistant Secretary-General Human and Social Development, Dr. Edward Greene, said that the new phase of the PEPFAR Caribbean Regional HIV/AIDS Partnership Framework underscored the commitment of the US to broaden its commitment to the HIV/AIDS response in the Caribbean region. He added that the CARICOM Secretariat was very appreciative of the efforts which had made possible the Framework Agreement.