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A Chinese delegation visited Phnom Penh, Cambodia from 11-13 October to promote mutual exchange on innovative partnerships between the government and civil society, which have helped revolutionize HIV programming. Both countries have partnered with communities and tailored their AIDS response to the specific needs of key populations at higher risk of HIV, creating global models, that have inspired the world.

The mission was organized on the eve of an official visit by China’s President Xi Jinpingto Cambodia, with support from UNAIDS China and Cambodia country officesand  the Gates Foundation. Itincluded representatives from the National Health and Family PlanningCommission, the National Center for AIDS/STD Control and Prevention, the Chinese Preventive Medicine Association and the Chinese Association of STD/AIDS Prevention and Control (AIDS Association).

The delegation was welcomed by the National Center for HIV/AIDS, Dermatology and STD, the National AIDS Authority as well as KHANA, the largest Cambodian NGO working on HIV.

Sun Xinhua, Deputy Counsel, Bureau of Disease Prevention and Control, National Health and Family Planning Commission, headedthe Chinese delegation and congratulated ‘the progress achieved by the Cambodian Government in decreasing HIV prevalence among the general population. This visit is a great opportunity to better understand the strategies and approaches for reaching key populations and opens new avenues for South-South cooperation.”  Dr Ly Penh Sun, Director of the National Center for HIV/AIDS, Dermatology and STD explained that“Cambodia has recently adopted the ‘Treat All’  policy, which is a key step forward to Fast-Tracking progress and achieving the 90-90-90 targets by 2020.” 

The Chinese delegation also introduced the experience of civil society’s participation in the HIV response in China, noting in particular the China AIDS Fund for NGO funding process for community organizations. Mostinternational funding for the AIDS response in China ended in 2013, impacting civil society’s participation in the response. So the Chinese government committed to fill the gap with domestic resources, leading to the establishment of the China AIDS Fund for NGO in 2015, which in its first year awarded US$7.5million (or CNY 50 million)to more than 460 civil society organizations. 41% of the funds went to support programmes for men who have sex with men, a key population that is experiencing a rapidly expanding epidemic. 

Learning from China’s transition towards more sustainable national funding was very useful as Cambodia faces declining international funding, A key factor of success for both countries is the strong cooperation between government and civil society” said,IengMouly Senior Minister in charge of Special mission and Chair of the National AIDS Authorityat the dialogue event organized to highlight civil society’s experience.

In Cambodia, the government works closely with civil society organizations to provide HIV prevention and support for enrollingkey populations in treatment and care. Their efforts help bring services closer to key populations.The delegationvisited a karaoke bar where peer counselors provide rapid finger-prick HIV screening to other entertainment workers as they wait for customers. The group also toured a club where men who have sex with men can access HIV prevention services. 


Chinese delegation visits karaoke bar where peer finger-prick HIV testing and counseling  is organized for entertainment workers

“China and Cambodia are Fast Tracking progress while also building the sustainability of their AIDS response.UNAIDS values South-South sharing and cooperation which promotes the scale-up ofinnovative approaches which reach people best,”cConcluded Marie-Odile Emond, UNAIDS Country Director.

The streets of Phnom Penh are ready for China’s President Xi Jinping’s official visit to Cambodia

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