Developing Countries Coordinating Committee
The 28th meeting of the Developing Countries Coordinating Committee (DCCC), EDCTP’s former independent advisory body of prominent African scientists and health professionals, took place at the EDCTP Africa Office in Cape Town (South Africa) from 15-16 March 2012. Two new members attended the meeting. Prof. Gita Ramjee of the Medical Research Council HIV Unit in Durban
(South Africa) replaced Prof. Nkandu Luo (now honourable Minister of Chiefs and Traditional Affairs of the Republic of Zambia) as HIV focal person for Southern Africa. Dr Abraham Aseffa, Scientific Director of the Armaeur Hansen Research Institute in Addis Ababa (Ethiopia), replaced Prof. Mecky Matee as TB focal person for Eastern Africa.

Partnership Board
The Partnership Board (PB), the former EDCTP independent scientific advisory board met in The Hague on 11-12 April 2012. The board discussed ongoing activities of the Secretariat and preparations for EDCTP2. Two new members were welcomed. Professor Marie-Louise Newell, Professor of Paediatric Epidemiology at the University College London, is an expert in the field of HIV. Dr Dawit Wolday, Executive Director of the Medical Biotech Laboratories (MBL) in Addis Ababa and Associate Professor of the Medicine at College of Health Sciences- Mekelle University in Ethiopia, brings considerable expertise in the area of cross-cutting issues and HIV.

Joint and last meeting of PB and DCCC
On 29 and 30 October 2012, the PB and the DCCC convened in The Hague for their last and joint meeting. The EDCTP Executive Director, Prof. Charles Mgone, provided an overview of the proposed governance structure for EDCTP2. This included the establishment of a streamlined scientific and strategic advisory body, the Strategic Advisory Committee (SAC) to replace the DCCC and the PB. In view of imperative preparations for the second programme, an interim advisory body, the interim SAC was constituted as a precursor to the SAC. This interim committee comprises a selected representation from both the former DCCC and PB membership, with plans to recruit additional members with expertise to match the EDCTP2 expanded remit. The interim SAC is chaired by Professor Shabbar Jaffar.

General Assembly
The EDCTP General Assembly (GA), convened at the Statens Serum Institute in Copenhagen, Denmark on 14 May 2012. Among other things, the GA discussed ongoing business and approved the Annual Statutory Accounts and Annual Report for 2011. The 10 proposals on Ethics capacity building and six Senior Fellowships which were recommended for funding by the SRCs and the
Partnership Board were also approved. The meeting focussed on preparations for EDCTP2 and the draft Strategic Business Plan for EDCTP2 was released for publication.

For its regular autumn meeting, the GA convened in Cape Town, South Africa on 2 November 2012, prior to the High-Level Conference on EDCTP2. Extensive discussion was dedicated to EDCTP2 on topics including the legislative process, the governance structure and the mechanisms for cofunding the partnership.

Executive Secretariat
The EDCTP Executive Secretariat expanded its staff in 2012 as part of the ongoing preparations for the second programme. For the important task of furthering research collaboration among the participating European countries, EDCTP appointed a North-North Networking Manager (Dr Gabrielle Breugelmans, August 2012) and a North-North Networking Officer (Ana Lúcia Cardoso, May 2012). The further development of the financial and project management systems required an Information Technology Officer (Lucien de Corte, September 2012) while the EDCTP Africa Office needed an additional Project Officer (Dr Michelle Singh, April 2012). Wendy Morrill joined EDCTP as Administrative Officer in April 2012. Temporary financial staff joined EDCTP in October (Rafael Taguas Sánchez as Finance Assistant) and November (Ralph Buchrnhornen as Grants Finance Assistant).