In January 2019, condom manufacturers and marketers met to discuss the formation of a condom alliance to address unmet need for family planning in India. India is among the many countries that have made commitments to FP2020, a global partnership for 120 million more women and girls to access contraceptives by 2020. In July 2017, India increased its commitment from $2 billion to $3 billion for its family planning program. In line with the FP2020 goal, the Sustaining Health Outcomes through the Private Sector (SHOPS) Plus project is focused on increasing access to family planning information and counseling among the urban poor through private sector approaches and partnerships.
SHOPS Plus convened the group of condom manufacturers and marketers to explore the possibility of an alliance and to discuss priorities to increase condom use. Thirty stakeholders participated in the meeting and exchanged insights on India’s condom market, its major challenges and opportunities, and the need for collective action to address market gaps. Participants indicated a strong interest and commitment towards the initiative.
Participants discussed obstacles that they were facing including: restrictions on the times that condoms advertisements can be aired which limits access to key audiences, effective use of new media and digital platforms to reach populations, ethical sourcing of condom materials and more. SHOPS Plus and the meeting participants will now develop a charter for the alliance and aim to meet regularly to commit to concrete actions to address the unmet need for condoms.