Bill Clinton and Bill Gates addressed 20,000 AIDS activists in Vienna calling for more efficient fight against AIDS by implementing cost-effective strategies.

During the XVIII International AIDS Conference, the former U.S. president and the founder of Microsoft Corp. said in separate speeches that efficiency and better business practices would serve more patients even as government funds to the developing world remains flat.

"If we keep spending our resources in exactly the same way we do today, we will fall further behind in our ability to treat everyone,"said Mr. Gates.

Mr. Clinton agreed that many countries are misspending foreign aid. He told the conference attendees, "In too many countries, too much money goes to pay for too many people to go to too many meetings, get on too many airplanes," Clinton said. "Keep in mind that every dollar we waste today puts a life at risk."

Mr. Gates emphasized that regardless of whether additional contribution can be secured, “we can do more to get the most benefit from each dollar of funding and every ounce of effort."

"If we push for a new focus on efficiency in both treatment and prevention and we continue ... to create new tools, we can drive down the number of infections dramatically and start writing the story of the end of AIDS."

The number of patients receiving antiretroviral treatment for AIDS last year reached 5.2 million in Africa, Latin America and other developing regions, according to the World Health Organization.

More cost-effectiveness strategies, when adopted, may prevent the progress from being jeopardized by the reduced funds by donor countries projected to happen in the near future.

Mr. Gates's proposed for promoting such strategies as male circumcision and prevention of mother-to-child transmission. Studies showed that male circumcision may reduce AIDS infection by about 60 percent. Also, antiretroviral therapy can prevent transmission in up to 90 percent of cases.

Yet in the case of male circumcision that could treat 35,000 men in Kenya at a cost of $1.4 million, while more than 41 million men in sub-Saharan Africa could benefit from it, only 150,000 have been circumcised in the past few years, Gates said.

The philanthropists Mr. Gates and Mr. Clinton also pointed out that reducing the cost of delivering antiretroviral drugs to patients is required. Mr. Clinton suggested reducing technical assistance, meetings and other overhead to streamline the delivery service.

He mentioned other ways to raise more funds by levying a small tax on flight tickets in some countries and disbursing the money to groups that fund AIDS treatment.