Response from Matilda Ernkrans, Minister for International Development Cooperation of Sweden to our open letter
Late last June, GFAN published an open letter to Matilda Ernkrans, Minister for International Development Cooperation, calling on Sweden to:
- Honour its pledge to the 6th Replenishment by paying in full its 2022 contribution
- Pledge over SEK 3.7 billion for the 7th Replenishment, to align Sweden with the Global Fund investment case of at least a 30% increase
The letter was signed by 245 organizations and shared with Minister Ernkrans. You can read the full letter here.
We have received a response from Minister Ernkrans, which you can find here or read below.
To contextualize the letter, note that the 3 billion SEK pledge announced by Sweden represents a 5% increase (in Swedish Krona) from the 6th Replenishment, but that at current (July 20) exchange rate, corresponds to a less than 1% increase in US dollar. The exchange rate is very volatile, so the exact number is likely to keep changing.
Dear Global Fund Advocates Network members,
Regarding your letter dated June 22, 2022, I would like to begin by expressing my gratitude for your deep engagement and commitment to our mutual goals of fighting against AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and fighting for better health for all, including sexual and reproductive health and rights.
On July 13, I had the pleasure to announce Sweden’s planned pledge of 3 billion SEK to the Global Fund for the 7th replenishment for 2023–2025. With this contribution, Sweden will remain a leading donor in relation to our size, and thereby reaffirms our deep commitment to the Global Fund’s lifesaving objectives.
As you know, Sweden is and remains one of the leading contributors of ODA relative to our economy and remains committed to allocating 1% of gross national income for development assistance. This enables continued ambitious development aid in the future. Even with in-donor refugee costs excluded from the aid budget, Sweden remains one of the largest donors in the world.
We are currently witnessing an exceptional humanitarian and refugee crisis caused by Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, and the displacement of millions of Ukrainian nationals throughout Europe. Sweden and many other countries have responded swiftly to support Ukrainians in need. In accordance with the OECD-DAC approved model applied by the Swedish Government, a portion of the official development assistance (ODA) has been reserved to cover increased in-donor refugee costs. The final amount that will be allocated to in-donor refugee costs will be determined by the number of people, mostly women and children, seeking protection in Sweden, and the extent of ODA-eligible costs for these.
As you note in your letter, the Government revised its earlier decision on June 7 this year and recommitted 1.3 billion SEK for development cooperation. In total, Sweden is budgeting SEK 57.3 billion for official development cooperation this year. The recommitted 1.3 billion SEK will facilitate Sweden’s important support to civil society and our support for democracy, human rights, and sustainable development.
Sweden looks forward to a successful 7th Global Fund replenishment this year. As you so clearly outline in your letter, the importance of the Global Fund is as great as ever.