The Tanzania Private Sector Foundation is engaging members of the Private Sector in the country in addressing human-driven problems facing wildlife and conservation programs.
Through an Inter-Ministerial Dialogue between the private sector and officials from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism, held in Arusha the parties discussed ways of combating wildlife trafficking, addressing human-wildlife conflicts and negative effects of climate change.
The dialogue was made possible by support from the ‘Tuhifadhi Maliasili,’ program executed through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
The Tanzania Private Sector Foundation (TPSF)’s Acting Chief Executive Officer Raphael Maganga encouraged participants to propose their own recommendations, adding that the project aims at creating awareness among Private Sector Organizations on the importance of corridors in biodiversity conservation and national development.
‘’Today we will discuss the outcomes of the dialogues held in Tanga and Arusha, and share these insights with high-level authorities in different ministries. By doing so, we hope to formulate resolutions that will further advance our collective efforts in promoting sustainable investments, protecting our biodiversity, combating wildlife trafficking as well as taking measures against climate change,” said Maganga.
The Former Director of Wildlife previously from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism, Dr Maurus Msuha who was the guest of honor during the Arusha Dialogue, lauded the partnership between Tanzania and the United States in supporting conservation efforts in the country.
Dr Msuha pointed out that the wildlife sector is responsible for more than 80 percent of tourism activities in Tanzania.
“It is the members of the private sector who conduct tourism business, all the government does is to conserve the ecosystem that allows wildlife to flourish and create a conducive environment for stakeholders to benefit from the industry,” said the Former Director of Wildlife.
“Conservation certainly pays dividends when the private and public partnership join hands to ensure that both conservation and investment goals are attained amicably,” Dr Msuha maintained, further stating that wildlife tourism accounts for 25 percent of foreign exchange and 17 percent of the country’s GDP.
On his part, the USAID Environment and Natural Resources Management Team Leader, Nathan Sage, reminded that the United States boasts more than 60 years conservation partnerships with Tanzania, and over the past five years, USAID has invested over 100 million dollars to this effect.
The USAID Tuhifadhi Maliasii Chief of Party, Thadeus Binamungu said that the project aims to address threats to Tanzania’s biodiversity through building institutional capacities of both public and private stakeholders, increasing private sector engagement in biodiversity conservation and natural resources management and Improving the policy, regulatory, and enabling environment for biodiversity conservation and natural resource management.
Participants tabled a series of recommendations including the need for joint efforts between the public and private sectors in addressing human-wildlife conflict, combating wildlife trafficking, addressing climate change, and sustainable investment and practices.
They also advised the need to assign value to conservation to attract sustainable investments in areas of connectivity, to link livelihood with conservation and hatching a master plan to address land use plans and other conservation challenges.