Spain focuses its funding on HIV/AIDS research

In 2015, Spain provided US$6 million for research and development (R&D) on poverty-related and neglected diseases (PRNDs), referred to as ‘global health R&D’ in this profile. The scope of funding included is defined by three criteria: the disease disproportionally affects people living in developing countries, there is a need for new products, and the commercial incentives are insufficient to attract R&D by the private industry. For more information see: Policy Cures, Neglected Disease Research and Development: A Pivotal Moment for Global Health, G-FINDER 2016.) The ‘Master Plan for Spanish Cooperation for 2013 to 2016’ underlines R&D as a key priority of its contributions to global public goods. Spain prioritizes R&D on HIV/AIDS: in 2015, a fifth of its global health R&D funding was allocated to HIV-related research (21%). Other priority areas include malaria (21%) and tuberculosis (6%). Overall, nearly a fifth of Spain’s funding to global health R&D in 2015 went to vaccine (20%).

According to G-FINDER data, three institutions channeled nearly all of Spain’s funding for global health R&D in 2015: The Spanish Agency of International Development Cooperation (AECID) (50%), the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competiveness (MINECO) (20%), the Carlos III Health Institute (20%).

  • AECID is the main public funder for Spain’s global health R&D: In 2015, it channeled 50% of Spain’s total funding for global health R&D (US$4 million). A substantive share of the funding (80%; US$2 million) went to the Barcelona Institute for Global Health (ISGlobal) for research on malaria. Spain’s Master Plan for development cooperation includes global health R&D as a priority of its contribution to global public goods. (Tooltipp1 Text: Not all of Spain’s financing to this area may be captured in the scope of the G-FINDER survey). The Carlos III Health Institute is the main public research funder in Spain for managing and carrying out biomedical research. In 2015, it disbursed a  total of US$1 million. It reports to the Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness and to the Ministry of Health. Its key mission is to support the development of scientific knowledge in sciences.
  • MINECO channeled US$1.1 million to global health R&D in 2015. It disbursed 92% of its budget to the IrsiCaixa AIDS Research Institute, a private non-profit foundation founded in 1995 by the La Caixa foundation and the Department of Health of Catalonia with the aim to eradicate HIV.

MAEC and MINECO are the main ministries responsible for global health R&D

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation (MAEC) is the most ministry working on global health R&D. The MAEC’s Health Division is mainly responsible for global health R&D funding. The AECID works on funding and implementation of global health R&D programs through its Directorate for Multilateral and Sectoral Cooperation. In turn, the Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness’s (MINECO) Secretary of State for Research steers Spain’s national strategy on R&D, this also includes global health R&D. The MINECO’s Carlos III Health Institute, and through direct investments, it implements health-related R&D interventions and channels funding to national research initiatives; it also represents Spain’s position on health R&D to the European Union. Previously the MAEC and the Spanish Development Promotion Fund (FONPRODE) used to finance product-development partnerships but this funding channel has been discontinued now that FONPRODE’s budget only includes loans and equities.