PROGRAMMES:The Biodiveristy Conservation and Participatory Project (BCPD)
The Biodiveristy Conservation and Participatory Project (BCPD) a Swaziland Government project managed by the Ministry of Tourism, Environment and Communications. It aims at taking an ecosystem management approach to biodiversity, conservation and socio-economic development within broad spatial corridors known as Biodiversity and Tourism Corridors (BTC's).
The project area includes a northern BTC, stretching east-west across northern Swaziland, and an eastern BTC stretching north-south along the Lubombo hills. Both corridors include "hot spot" areas of globally significant biodiversity and represent a progression of ecosystems along a continuous altitudinal gradient. The two corridors also represent important tourism routes, offering the potential for creating and marketing a unique and substantial tourism product.
Focusing on two BTCs linking Swaziland with South Africa and Mozambique, achieve the following:
- integrated land-use planning based on an ecosystem management approach;
- conservation of important biodiversity assets;
- stimulation of private sector driven tourism development;
- empowerment of rural people to improve their livelihoods through sustainable natural resource management.
The BCPD project is currently under preparation and has been since September 2001. Preparation will be complete by June 2004, whereafter implementation will begin. Project implementation should last for seven years.
$350,000 has been granted by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) for project preparation and is currently being used. Following approval of the Project Brief by the GEF council in May 2003, $5,500,000 has been committed by the GEF as a grant for project implementation. A further $6,500,000 is urgently needed for project implementation. Donors/funders interested in contributing to this financing gap are request to contact the project office (details at the page bottom).
Activities recently underway
- the mapping of biodiversity assets
- the mapping of tourism assets
- the mapping of areas of importance for improved natural resource management
- recommending an institutional structure and monitoring plan for project implementation
Inception reports have been submitted on each of these jobs and a number of workshops have been held to discuss with stakeholders, the likely outcomes of the consultancies.
The project preparation appraisal is due to take place in late March of 2004. This will involve appraisal by the World Bank of the suitability of the proposed project for financial support and for implementation. Before this date the above studies need to have been completed and the following also need to have been achieved:
- completion of the Environmental Assessment for the project
- clarification of the co-financing arrangements for the project implementation
- the carrying out of an economic analysis of the likely tourism benefits through the project
- completion of a project appraisal document
Should the appraisal in late March of 2004 be successful then project implementation may begin thereafter.