Poll Shows: High Expectations of Global Companies in the Prevention and Treatment of HIV/AIDS

Media Release

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TORONTO - August 10, 2006:

A poll of Sub Saharan African citizens shows that they hold companies responsible for helping everyone in the communities in which they operate with HIV/AIDS treatment and prevention, and not just their employees.

As part of a comprehensive study on African citizens’ opinions on a range of socio-economic issues, international polling firm, GlobeScan tested the public’s expectations of companies when it comes to HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment. People were asked for whom large companies should be responsible in this regard: their employees only; employees as well as members of their households; everyone in the community in which they operate; or no one.

 The poll of 11,943 people from 10 African countries was conducted between October and December 2005.

· Overall, a majority of Africans (63%) surveyed think companies should be responsible for helping everyone in the community in which they operate, with majorities in nearly all countries thinking this way.

· Less than one in six (16%) people think companies should be responsible only for employees and members of their households, and very few think companies should be responsible only for their employees (5%) or for no one at all (6%).

GlobeScan President, Doug Miller, comments, “Clearly, people expect companies to be very much part of the solution to the HIV/AIDS pandemic.”

While people want companies to provide support in the area of HIV/AIDS for the entire community and not just for their employees, they struggle to name a leading company in the area of HIV/AIDS relief.

· People were asked to name a company in their country that they believe is a leader in HIV/AIDS relief.  Overall, more than one in two people (59%) say they either ‘don’t know’ (46%) or that no company is a leader (13%).

· In South Africa and Zimbabwe, two countries with the highest HIV/AIDS prevalence in this year’s research, 79 percent and 43 percent respectively say ‘don’t know’ or ‘none’ when asked this question.

· Even those people who mention a specific organization, mention mainly government agencies or NGOs. The top mentions are the World Health Organization (3%), the Ministry of Health (2%) and UNICEF (1%). The only major companies mentioned are Coca Cola (1%) and Vodacom (1%).

GlobeScan President Doug Miller, comments, “People appear to not be aware of what some companies are doing, and would likely welcome a show of leadership from the corporate community in terms of HIV/AIDS treatment and prevention.”

Country Results

These findings are drawn from the 2006 GlobeScan African in the New Century study, based on a public opinion poll with 11,943 citizens across 10 African countries, conducted between October and December 2005, the exception being Nigeria where the poll was fielded in April 2006. Each country’s findings are considered accurate to within +/- 3 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. For more details, please see the Methodology.

For More Information:

Dr. Simon Jimenez
GlobeScan Incorporated

+1 (416) 969-3083


GlobeScan Incorporated is a global public opinion and stakeholder research firm with offices in Toronto, London, and Washington. GlobeScan conducts custom research and annual tracking studies on global issues. With a research network spanning 50+ countries, GlobeScan works with global companies, multilateral agencies, national governments, and non-government organizations to deliver research-based insights for successful strategies.