Task Force on Fiscal Policy for Health

The Task Force on Fiscal Policy for Health – announced by Mike Bloomberg and economist Larry Summers, former Secretary of the U.S. Treasury and former Director of the National Economic Council – brings together esteemed fiscal policy, development and health leaders from around the globe to address the enormous and growing health and economic burden of noncommunicable diseases – including cardiovascular disease, cancer, chronic respiratory diseases and diabetes – with fiscal policy tools that are currently underutilized by governments and their leaders.

Noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) are the leading cause of death in the world, killing 40 million people each year and representing 70 percent of all annual deaths. Eighty percent of NCD deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries, straining health care systems, contributing to poverty and posing a major barrier to development. Tobacco use, obesity and risky alcohol consumption are three leading risk factors for the development of NCDs. Ministers of Finance control a powerful tool to reduce the harmful use of these products: tax policy.

This Task Force will examine the evidence on excise tax policy for health, including barriers to implementation, and make recommendations on how countries can best leverage fiscal policies to yield improved health outcomes for their citizens with the added benefit of bringing in additional revenue. Smart fiscal policy can save lives and help economies.

Members of the Task Force on Fiscal Policy for Health:

  • Michael R. Bloomberg, Co-Chair
  • Lawrence H. Summers, Co-Chair
  • Masood Ahmed, President, Center for Global Development
  • Zeti Akhtar Aziz, Former Central Bank Governor
  • Kaushik Basu, Professor of Economics, Cornell University
  • Helen Clark, Former UNDP Administrator; Former Prime Minister of New Zealand
  • Margaret Chan, Former Director General, WHO
  • Bent Høie, Minister of Health and Care Services, Norway
  • Sri Mulyani Indrawati, Minister of Finance, Indonesia
  • Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Former Minister of Finance, Nigeria
  • Zhu Min, Director, National Institute of Financial Research, Tsinghua University, China
  • Mauricio Cardenas, Minister of Finance, Colombia
  • Minouche Shafik, Director, London School of Economics
  • Nicola Sturgeon, First Minister of Scotland
  • Tabaré Vázquez, President of Uruguay