A new step towards strengthening partnerships for conservation of East African Community’s transboundary wildlife resources
Experts from around the region met this week at the East African Community (EAC) Pavilion to discuss the establishment and operationalisation of an EAC Transboundary Wildlife Conservation Areas Network among other salient issues pertaining to management of protected areas. The idea of creating such a network was endorsed by the EAC’s Sectoral Council for Tourism and Wildlife Management during its 10th Meeting that was held from 27th – 30th June 2022 at the EAC Headquarters in Arusha, Tanzania.
Focused on priority transboundary landscapes, which not only host many of East Africa’s remaining large wildlife populations but also provide critical ecosystem services that support the region’s development, the proposed network will function as an information exchange, learning and innovation network that will convene technical expertise from the EAC Partner States as well as from international and regional conservation and development partners. The network will support the work of the Technical Experts from the EAC Partner States in respect to management of EAC’s Transboundary Wildlife Conservation Areas by facilitating information exchange and providing technical support. The network is also envisaged to help the EAC Partner States catalyze new partnerships and funding for on-the-ground transboundary conservation actions. The idea of the EAC network was inspired by a similar successful network in Southern Africa: the SADC Transfrontier Conservation Areas Network.
The development of the network is also supported by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), as well as the Secretariat of the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS) as part of a focus on providing capacity-building assistance to the EAC Secretariat’s Transfrontier Conservation Areas (TFCA) Technical Working Group and the wider objective of strengthening ecological connectivity in the region.