The United States opposes proposals for reforms to make the World Health Organization more independent, Reuters quoted four officials involved in the discussions as saying.
According to the reform proposal document issued by the WHO’s continuing financial working group on January 4, the proposals include increasing the annual fee payable by each member and strengthening the WHO’s powers. The US is the country that pays the most annual fees.
Some U.S. officials said they opposed the proposal because it was impossible to determine whether the WHO could withstand pressure, including from China, in the face of major public health events in the future.
U.S. officials did not respond to media inquiries. An EU official, who asked not to be named, confirmed that the US opposes the reform proposals. Major EU member states and most African, South American and Arab countries support the proposal. China made no statement.
According to the proposal, member states should enforce an increase in the annual fee paid to the WHO from 2024 until 2028, so that the proportion of the annual fee to the core funding will increase from the current 20% to 50%, and the core funding will increase every year. $1 billion. The core funding of the WHO consists of annual fees and other donations. The reform is to improve the current shortage of funding for the WHO.
Another WHO-appointed expert group also recommended that members significantly increase the annual fee, so that the share of the annual fee in the core budget will rise to 75%.
According to reports, the United States counter-proposed the establishment of an independent fund, with the country paying the annual fee directly controlling the WHO to provide support in the event of major public health emergencies. European countries have reservations about this.