Update

UNAIDS-Lancet Commission Asia-Pacific dialogue calls for renewed leadership

21 November 2013

The second in a series of regional dialogues organized by the UNAIDS and Lancet Commission: Defeating AIDS - Advancing global health was held on 19 November in Bangkok. The need for a new approach to leadership on AIDS in the post-2015 era was the main message emerging from the dialogue.

The aim of the dialogue, which took place during the 11th International Congress on AIDS in Asia and the Pacific, was to gather regional perspectives on AIDS in the post-2015 agenda for inclusion in the work of the Commission.

Participants

UNAIDS Deputy Executive Director, Jan Beagle;  James Chau, National UNAIDS Goodwill Ambassador for China;  Hon Justice Michael Kirby, Chair of the UN Commission of Inquiry on North Korea and Commissioner UNAIDS-Lancet Commission;  Dr Prasada Rao, United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for AIDS in Asia and the Pacific;  Lyn Kok, President and CEO of Standard Charter Bank (Thailand) as well as parliamentarians, activists, people living with HIV, young people, corporate leaders, academia, and representatives of the UN system and other international organizations.

Key messages

  • The need for a new approach to leadership on AIDS in the post-2015 era
  • The importance of mobilizing broader partnerships, including with the private sector, to build on the momentum of the AIDS response.
  • The need to build on lessons learnt in the response to HIV to strengthen the broader sustainable development agenda.
  • Dignity, social justice and equity––essential to the post-2015 framework.

Outcomes

The outcomes of these dialogues will help inform the recommendations of the UNAIDS and Lancet Commission to be presented in 2014. 

Additional regional, think tank and civil society dialogues are planned over the coming weeks: Civil society organizations in Eastern and Southern Africa (25 November); Europe (27 November), as part of the European Development Days; a think tank dialogue at the Institute of Global Governance, University College London (2 December); Caribbean (4 December); Latin America (4 December); Africa (7 December) and Eastern Europe-Central Asia (13 December). The first regional dialogue was held in Addis Ababa on 3 November.

Quotes

"We are at a pivotal time in the AIDS response. The Asia-Pacific region in particular is at a critical juncture. The region is making important progress towards reaching global AIDS targets, but the pace of progress is too slow and significant challenges remain. Business as usual will mean that the region will not meet the targets."

Jan Beagle, UNAIDS Deputy Executive Director

"We are not at Zero and there is a lot of getting to do… but in getting to zero we need to get AIDS back in people’s imagination – whether it resonates in their imagination in terms of the right to health and dignity or as a global public good; we need more action and fewer words."

Hon Justice Michael Kirby, Chair of the UN Commission of Inquiry on North Korea and Commissioner, UNAIDS-Lancet Commission

"As we move into 2015 and beyond, it is imperative that the private sector and international advocacy organizations embark on a joint journey, playing to their unique skills, to keep AIDS on top of people’s mind. As not addressing the health impact, discrimination and stigma that exists will ultimately affect the productivity and economic strength of businesses and countries. Joining the call to 'Defeat AIDS and advance global health' is the responsible thing for businesses to do for their employees and society at large."

Lyn Kok, President and CEO, Standard Chartered Bank (Thailand)

"The AIDS response has provided me an excellent platform to discuss transgender issues and has opened doors to a range of decision makers to address our issues. We need a strong AIDS response to continue to serve this function in the post-2015 period."

Laxmi Narayan Tripathi, Asia-Pacific Transgender Network