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Government of Japan Expresses its Pledge of US$200 Million to GHIT Fund/UNDP Replenishment

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“GHIT 3.0,” its third five-year plan announced.

TOKYO, May 25, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — At the G7 Hiroshima Summit 2023, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida announced the Government of Japan’s pledge to contribute US$200 million to the Global Health Innovative Technology Fund (GHIT Fund)/United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). This pledge supports the GHIT Fund’s third phase of operations, including investments in research and development (R&D) of drugs, vaccines and diagnostics, utilizing Japan’s innovation and expertise to prevent and address infectious diseases such as tuberculosis, malaria and neglected tropical diseases (NTDs), which are highly prevalent in low- and middle-income countries.

In addition to the new contribution from the Government of Japan, support from industry for GHIT’s replenishment has increased compared to previous replenishments. All founding industry partners* have committed, including Astellas Pharma Inc., Chugai Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., Daiichi Sankyo Company, Limited, Eisai Co., Ltd., Shionogi & Co., Ltd. and Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited. Additionally, founding foundation partners Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Wellcome will continue to support GHIT. Over the next five years, the GHIT Fund will strive to secure additional support with a total replenishment goal of US$400 million to support operations and investments.

This replenishment supports the implementation of “GHIT 3.0,” the institution’s third five-year plan, as follows.

1) Galvanize Innovation:

  • In each stage of R&D, from discovery to clinical to regulatory approval phases, the GHIT Fund will continue to invest in product development to invigorate innovation in R&D by Japanese and global stakeholders. We will actively invest with prioritization of late-stage product development programs to pave the way for faster delivery of therapeutics, vaccines and diagnostics to the people who need them the most.
  • We will promote the co-creation of products through exploration of innovative technology and promote global, cross-sectoral collaborations across academia, research institutions, pharmaceutical companies, small and medium-sized enterprises and start-up companies, that span multiple disciplines such as pandemic preparedness and climate change.

2) Maximize Impact:

  • We will accelerate product development for tuberculosis, malaria and NTDs and optimize portfolio and resources to maximize investment impact. Specifically, we will explore various funding mechanisms to continue sustainable and efficient funding for R&D using limited resources (e.g., funding, personnel, etc.). In addition, we will further enhance institutional development, for example, through reinforcement of compliance and risk management and promotion of greater transparency of decision-making processes.

3) Catalyze Partnerships:

  • To deliver drugs, vaccines and diagnostics to the field more quickly, we will proactively collaborate with product development partners to help them develop robust launch strategies and establish strategic, product-focused partnerships to create an environment for effective access and delivery.
  • We will strengthen strategic partnerships to expand our institutional presence in low- and middle-income countries to ensure that the medical interventions we invest in meet the needs of the neglected patients.
  • We will leverage global networks, such as the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), to ensure seamless connectivity, and provide end-to-end support between R&D and access and delivery.

Dr. Osamu Kunii, GHIT Fund CEO, states, “I would like to thank the Japanese government, our pharmaceutical industry partners, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Wellcome for their support. We will continue to work with our partners to address critical global health challenges by accelerating and optimizing innovative product development, notably by continuing to promote collaboration between Japanese and global research institutions.”

To date, the GHIT Fund has invested a total of approximately 29.1 billion yen in 118 projects. Currently, 53 projects are ongoing, including 26 targeted and exploratory research projects, 15 non-clinical trials and 12 clinical trials. Demonstrating the GHIT Fund’s strength of partnerships, 170 partners (59 domestic and 111 global groups) have participated in product development thus far, and the number of Japanese institutions and partnering global institutions has increased dramatically over the past 10 years (as of May 25, 2023).

Celebrating its 10th anniversary, the GHIT Fund will continue to promote innovative R&D from Japan, fighting neglected infectious diseases through global partnerships, with the mission of reducing the burden of neglected infectious diseases that afflict more than one billion people in order to achieve a healthy world for all.

For details regarding the GHIT 3.0 Strategic Plan (FY2023-FY2027)”, please click here. https://www.ghitfund.org/assets/othermedia/strategicplan/StrategicPlan_eng.pdf

* As of May 25, 2023, the GHIT Fund has also received expressions of support from FUJIFILM Corporation, Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., Kyowa Kirin Co., Ltd., Merck KGaA and Sumitomo Pharma Co., Ltd.

The GHIT Fund is a Japan-based international public-private partnership fund (PPP) that was formed between the Government of Japan, multiple pharmaceutical companies, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome, and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). The GHIT Fund invests in and manages an R&D portfolio of development partnerships aimed at addressing neglected diseases, such as malaria, tuberculosis, and neglected tropical diseases, which afflict the world’s vulnerable and underserved populations. In collaboration with global partners, the GHIT Fund mobilizes Japanese industry, academia, and research institutes to create new drugs, vaccines, and diagnostics for malaria, tuberculosis, and neglected tropical diseases.
https://www.ghitfund.org/en

For more information, contact:
Katy Lenard at +1-301-280-5719 or [email protected]
Eriko Mugitani at +81-36441-2032 or [email protected]

SOURCE Global Health Innovative Technology (GHIT) Fund

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