What do the parties commit to on international development, HIV & AIDS and access to medicines in the 2017 Manifestos?

Due to the Lobbying Act, which sets the rules on how individuals and organisations can publicly campaign in the lead up to an election, we were hesitant to previously share Manifesto commitments without showing subtle bias.

Now that the June 2017 General Election has concluded, we would like to draw your attention to what each of the major political parties’ manifestos said about the three diseases (HIV and AIDS, TB & Malaria), foreign aid spending and access to medicines.

Conservative:

  • ‘We will maintain the commitment to spend 0.7 per cent of our gross national income on assistance to developing nations and international emergencies.’
  • ‘We will continue to use our aid budget in alignment with the Sustainable Development Goals, to end extreme poverty, save children’s lives, and provide an education for girls. We will work to end the subjugation and mutilation of women, to combat the brutal slave trade in fellow human beings and to prevent catastrophic environmental degradation. And we will continue to lead global efforts to tackle sexual violence in conflict.’
  • ‘We will significantly increase our funding of UK-led medical and technical research into the biggest threats to global health and prosperity.’
  • ‘We do not believe that international definitions of development assistance always help in determining how money should be spent, on whom and for what purpose. So we will work with like-minded countries to change the rules so that they are updated and better reflect the breadth of our assistance around the world. If that does not work, we will change the law to allow us to use a better definition of development spending, while continuing to meet our 0.7 per cent target.’

 

Labour:

  • ‘We fully support the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) agreed globally to eradicate poverty and protect the environment. Labour will develop a cross-government strategy for ensuring the SDGs are implemented, and report annually to Parliament on our performance.’
  • ‘We will establish a Centre for Universal Health Coverage, providing global partnerships, support and encouragement to countries that want UHC, helping them to generate the funding and systems required for its delivery.’
  • ‘We will invest in new public-health driven research and development to find effective and affordable treatments for diseases in the developing world, including fighting TB, malaria, HIV/AIDS and neglected tropical diseases.’
  • ‘We will ensure all NHS patients get fast access to the most effective new drugs and treatments, and insist on value-for-money agreements with pharmaceutical companies.’

 

Liberal Democrats:

  • ‘Maintain our commitment to spend 0.7% of UK gross national income on 85 Liberal Democrat Manifesto 2017 overseas development assistance, in line with the OECD definition, which we legislated for in the last parliament.’
  • ‘Invest to eliminate within a generation preventable diseases like TB, HIV and malaria and explore new ways to support research and development into vaccinations and treatment to combat these and other deadly diseases and infections.’
  • ‘In light of the US government’s dangerous and anti-science attacks on international programmes of vaccination and family planning, which impact disproportionately on the health of women and children, seek to protect global spending on these essential provisions.’

 

Scottish National Party:

  • ‘SNP MPs will hold the UK government to its commitment of spending 0.7 per cent of Gross National Income on international development.
  • We will seek to ensure overseas aid funding meets the internationally-recognised Development Assistance Criteria and does not undermine public services in developing countries.
  • The Global Goals should be a key focus for international development policy and spending, and the particular role of women and girls in development must be recognised.
  • The Department for International Development should be maintained as a standalone department of Government with its own Secretary of State.’

 

We welcome the commitments from all the major political parties to ending the three diseases and investing in responsible R&D and will seek to protect spending 0.7% GNI on overseas development according to internationally recognised rules.

At the heart of STOPAIDS’ approach is engaging decision-makers to influence UK Parliament and government departments. Ending AIDS, poverty and injustice are shared passions by MPs and peers across the political spectrum and we have had the pleasure of working with brilliant parliamentarians who unite together across parties to highlight these important goals and push the UK government to do all it can to achieve them. In the new parliament we look forward to welcoming back previous parliamentary champions as well as developing new ones.