The Problems are Common with All the Reserves

    So far the reserves of Uzbekistan have a number of problems. These problems are caused by the complicated structure of their management, because of which it is difficult to come to coordinated actions, common standards, requirements and norms and funding system. The Protected Natural Territories (PNT) in Uzbekistan are subordinated to four different departments. Six reserves (the Baday-Tugay, Zaamin, Zarafshan and Kizilkum) are under authority of the Head Department of Forestry of the Ministry of Agriculture and Water Resources. The Gissar reserve is under authority of the State Committee for Nature Protection, the Kitab reserve – of the State Committee on Geology and Mineral Resources, the Chatkal reserve – of the Khokimyat of the Tashkent province. The game reserves are subordinated to a larger number of departments.
    Within the frameworks of current activity of the project ‘Strengthening of the Stability of the National System of Protected Territories by Focusing on the Reserves’ the national working meeting on the funding of the protected natural territories and raise of their capacity was held.
    This project will continue till 2012 and should implement a number of important tasks aimed at strengthening of the system of the protected natural territories of Uzbekistan through development and demonstration of new approaches to efficient management of the reserves. The project is expected to achieve its goals through accomplishing three main objectives: development of the master-plan for expansion of the protected natural territories system of Uzbekistan; strengthening of institutional and individual capacity for provision of the expansion; improvement of efficient management and demonstration of new approaches to the management of conservation in the buffer zones of reserves in Uzbekistan.
   The agenda of the working meeting contained the presentation on the project activity implemented for the working period.
     Akmal Ismatov, the manager of the project remarked: “The project team has done a big work. The recommendations on expansion of PNT system have been prepared on the basis of national and international requirements, discussed with the main interested persons at the regional and national levels; agreed upon with the members of the project Council and presented to the Parliament. The assessment of institutional and individual capacity has been implemented and corresponding reports have been prepared. The assessment of existing funding of PNT has also been implemented. The interdepartmental group for registration of the key species of biodiversity in reserves has been created. The reasons for creation of the protected zone of the Surkhan reserve and the draft project of border plan of the protected zone have been prepared. Now the development of the management plan of the Surkhan reserve and created buffer zone is already being carried out”.
     At the second part of the working meeting the participants focused their attention on the topic ‘Integration of the Problems of Funding of PNT into Management Planning Processes’. The situation of the Surkhan state reserve was considered as the working  model.
    Lucy Emerton, the international expert in financing of the Protected natural Territories (PNT) made rich in content presentation on ‘Stable Funding of PNT: Challenges and Learned Lessons in the world and Uzbekistan’.
    Mike Appleton, the international expert in planning, presented his opinion in the report ‘Development of the Management Plan of the Surkhan State Reserve with Consideration of International Experience and the Best Practice’.
    The examples of the best international practice of fiunding PNT were very impressive:
1. Payment for use of resources. Macedonia
    Multipurpose PNT Yasen – management expenses are covered by incomes from hunting and forest activity.
2. Tourism and eco-business. Russia.
    State funds are used for support of business projects of the population living in the buffer zone of the national Park Ugra. They are also used for eco-tourism and eco-agriculture, accommodation of guests in private houses.
3. Local concessions and stable use. Pakistan
    The Torghar Public Program of Hunting provides with  incomes both  local authorities and local community.
4. Private investments and business. Russia.
    The national park Ugra permits to the private sector to take part in the tender for rent of objects and tourist routs. Payments come to PNT.
5. Compensation of biodiversity.
    The oil pipe-line Baku-Tbilisi–Ceyhan gave about 2.5 million USD for compensation projects in the forests, national parks and reserves of Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey.
6. Compensation mechanisms. The Republic of  Kyrgyzstan.
    After the ecological disaster in the Kumtor mine, the funding was used for the creation of the Sari-Chat Ertash reserve.
7. Corporate sponsorship. Fujairah.
    The International Bank HSBC financed the government of Fujairah for creation of the mountain PNT Wadi Wurayya, implementation of researches in the field of biodiversity and establishment of a huntsmen’s group.
8. Fiscal instruments. Brazil.
    25% of VAT on goods and services is allocated for municipalities, including funds for conservation of watersheds. One million hectares of land were saved in the state Parana and funds amounting to 2.5 million USD were allocated in the state Minas Gerais.
9. Payment for services of ecosystem. Vietnam.
    The Law following which all water-power stations, water supply organizations and tourist companies make payments to PNTs for   recognition of ecosystem’s services, was adopted.
10. Funding of carbons. China.
    The buffer zone of the Goligonshan reserve is regenerated with  forests and  sale carbon credits on voluntary market. Outcomes come in the PNT and local farmers.
11. Exchange of debts for nature. The Republic of Kyrgyzstan.
    The interministerial working group created the mechanism of exchange of debts for nature concerned with the UNO imitative for poor mountain countries. The negotiations with Germany are conducted as with the potential donor.

    What mechanisms of funding of PNTs will work in Uzbekistan?

N.Shivaldova   
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