Cardiovascular disease is responsible for a large proportion of morbidity and mortality in people with type 2 diabetes, who typically have a clustering of risk factors for coronary heart disease (CHD), including dyslipidaemia. Intensive single-factor interventions to lower blood glucose have not eliminated the increased risk of adverse cardiovascular outcomes in patients with diabetes. In comparison, multifactorial interventions, which include normalizing blood lipids with statins, appear to be more effective in reducing CHD. However, risk reductions in patients with type 2 diabetes are often no better than those seen in people without diabetes, despite the much greater baseline risk in the former group. High-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) is an independent risk factor for CHD, but is only minimally improved by statin therapy. Additional interventions aimed at increasing HDL-C can further reduce cardiovascular morbidity and mortality in patients with type 2 diabetes. However, use of fibrates in combination with statins may pose an unacceptable risk of myopathy. Therefore, other strategies for combination therapy are needed to normalize lipids in patients with type 2 diabetes or metabolic syndrome.