The Peace Parks Foundation, a South African organisation that helps establish trans-frontier conservation areas, is planning to invest $10 million to improve tourist accommodation and combat poaching at the Maputo Special Reserve in Southern Mozambique.
The Foundation expects the Mozambican government to sign the proposed Care Management Agreement by the end of the year so the planned improvements of the park facilities can begin.
While waiting for government approval, the Peace Park Foundation is taking preparatory steps to inject $10m into improving tourist facilities in Maputo Special Reserve, also known as the Elephant Reserve, in cooperation with local park management.
“As far as the initial planning goes, $10 million will be put in as a minimum and approximately half of that will be focused on tourism development and development facilities that will be owned by the government,” Antony Alexander, Peace Parks Foundation’s Project Manager in Mozambique told Zitamar News.
According to Alexander, the necessary donor funds have already been secured by the foundation.
Currently, the Maputo Special Reserve development plan includes constructing three camps with chalets and campsites. Other funds will be directed towards improving protection of wildlife.
“There are more animals there now so we need a stronger anti-poaching capacity,” Alexander said.
Maputo Special Reserve has previously received a grant from the World Bank project Mozbio, and 2,332 animals were relocated to the park earlier this year.
According to Peace Parks Foundation’s count, visitor numbers have increased by 15-20% in recent years, and are expected to rise further when the $725 million Maputo-Kosi Bay road, including the Maputo-Katembe bridge, is completed in March 2018, which will make the park easily accessible by road from Maputo and South Africa.
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