The second session of our webinar series will focus on:
“Innovative strategic financing instruments for conservation tourism in Africa: the example of multilateral development banks and LT&C Examples”
After a first round in which we found out what worked and what didn’t for LT&C champions around the globe, we’d like to focus on a continent where tourism has played a fundamental role for conservation as well as for development, and where several innovative approaches have been tested over the years, from community-based tourism to conservancies and from concessions and PPPs to State-run park tourism agencies: Africa, our common origin. We will look at specific champions as well as innovative financial instruments to allow the sector to recover. As before, our goal is to identify how LT&C champions can face the post-COVID-19 tourism protocols and the future client expectations regarding safe travels, and diversity their activities to optimize economic returns on their stewardship of protected areas and other area-based means of conservation. Our ultimate goal is to share those examples to ensure the sector continues to be a critical contributor to the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework. We invite you to learn from the leaders in this field, and share your views.
Justification for the webinar series
Nature-based tourism (see the World Bank’s “Tools and Resources”) or eco-tourism is a “contract” started in 1985, whereas tourists make parks worth their maintenance and those communities servicing the tourists keep poachers and loggers at bay; this kind of tourism pays for well-managed parks and funds rangers, and protection and veterinary programs; it is a source of revenue for rural communities that, due to this revenue, can stay off more damaging uses of the ecosystem. According to WTTC, wildlife tourism generated US $120 billion/year, 3 million jobs, particularly in natural destinations such as in Africa (1/3 of tourism), Latin America (1/10) and Asia-Pacific (1/17). The COVID shock has essentially crashed this market to the ground for the last half year. WHAT NOW for those champions?
Travel will continue, but mainstream tourism depended on (questionable) subsidies and incentives (low-cost airlines, 2,500 room hotels with 2-3 day stays, multilateral loans) may not survive in the post-COVID environment. Sustainable tourism (defined by its support to the Sustainable Development Goals, SDGs) will need now to come into the forefront and to adjust to new times. Post-COVID trends: domestic tourism increases; more extended stays for international visitors; smaller-scale “niche” products and services. Past trends will need to intensity: innovative co-management options such as concessions, licenses, public-private partnerships, and citizen science done by tour guides, park rangers, accommodation managers and tourists, as already done in Canada and South Africa, among other destinations.
Opportunities for international cooperation on this topic will come up at the 15th Conference of the Parties of the Convention on Biological Diversity in Kunming, Yunnan Province, May 2021, and associated parallel events. This webinar series will coordinate the lessons learned and the role of small- and medium-sized entrepreneurs such as those in the Linking Tourism & Conservation Network. The basic question is “How can we keep those doing best for nature from closing”? Outcomes of this consultation would then be taken to the Business Forum parallel to the 15th Conference of the Parties of the CBD in Kunming in 2021.
Counting on the experience and recent lessons learned, this webinar series will engage leading LT&C members running such businesses with the aim to:
- Identify best practices in overcoming COVID challenges for LT&C champions themselves
- Identify options for systemic improvements and restorative interventions from outside partners that can leverage LT&C champions’ capacities
- Position LT&C as a source of best practices for nature/tourism
Focus of the 2nd session
Africa and innovative strategic financing instruments for conservation tourism
Oliver Hillel from the CBD-Secretariat in Montreal will be the Moderator of the Webinar and will introduce the topic: Innovative strategic financing instruments for conservation tourism in Africa: the example of multilateral development banks and LT&C-Example.
Tourism specialist with the World Bank Group for the past 15 years, Shaun Mann, is offering to talk about his work on a concept for an Innovative strategic financing instruments for tourism in Africa: proposals to democratize conservation”.
Netsai Bollmann, based in Botswana, will talk about “Pushing the Boundaries: Reimagining and repackaging destinations across Southern African Transfrontier Conservation Areas against a COVID-19 backdrop”.
Greg Bakunzi, based in Rwanda, will talk about “Amahoro Tours and Redrocks Rwanda supporting Kahuzi-Biéga National Park, DRC”
We are welcoming other LT&C-Example providers from Africa to participate in the Panel Discussion after the presentations.
Anybody else interested in the subject is welcome to participate and get access to the Zoom meeting. Just indicate your kind of interest and