New Memorandum of Understanding signed with German-based International Conservation NGO

In another landmark move towards the implementation of the Low Carbon Development Strategy 2030 and improved environmental stewardship, the Government of Guyana, though the Office of the President, today signed a new Memorandum of Understanding with the Frankfurt Zoological Society (FZS), an internationally operating nature-based organisation.

The FZS, which was founded in 1858, has been supporting conservation projects in Africa, Central and South America, Southeast Asia and Europe for many decades, in collaboration with governmental and non-governmental partner organisations. In South America, FZS concentrates on the Amazon basin and adjacent areas following its mission to conserve wildlife and ecosystems focusing on protected areas and outstanding wilderness places.

Speaking at the event which took place at the Herdmanston Lodge in Georgetown, Mr. Robert Persaud, Foreign Secretary (FS) and Chair of the Protected Areas Commission Board, highlighted that the Government of Guyana is committed to protecting and managing our natural patrimony to not only bequeath it for the future generations but to ensure that the social and economic needs of our people are met today. The strides taken by the Government particularly in the recent issuance of carbon credits and the subsequent sale of credits amounting to US $750M is also testimony that the Government executes its plans for the benefit of the people of Guyana.

According to the FS, the country has recently made significant strides in the elaboration of the LCDS 2030 by committing to the expansion and strengthening of the National Protected Areas System in Guyana with a goal of protecting 17% of state lands and a further intention to meet the 30% by 2030 target. This partnership with FZS therefore underscores the Government’s commitment to the LCDS 2030 and the conservation of biodiversity in Guyana.

In 2014, FZS began its cooperation with the Government of Guyana, through the Protected Areas Commission (PAC), the government agency responsible for managing the NPAS in Guyana. Since then, FZS has been instrumental in supporting the operationalisation of the newly established Commission in the areas of system-wide strategic planning, capacity development, and improved management of the Kanuku Mountains Protected Area (KMPA). This new MOU, which covers a five-year period, will see the expansion of FZS’s cooperation in Guyana within the context of the LCDS 2030. It will allow FZS to establish and operate a Country Office in Guyana, support the expansion of the NPAS, continue its collaboration with the PAC for strengthened management of the KMPA and the NPAS, foster indigenous community engagement and development, and support Guyana to advance participation in key global biodiversity and climate-related initiatives.

Dr. Antje Müllner, Head of the South America and Southeast Asia Department at FZS, shared that one of FZS’s main guiding principles is a long-term approach and commitment to conservation, through strong partnerships with national and community-based institutions. She stated that an important factor is the coordinated approach of several institutions and the relevant local stakeholders to tackle the threats to biodiversity. Both the problems as well as the possible solutions to the crisis are often complex. We need “all hands on deck” to jointly work on that from multiple angles. Dr. Antje Müllner also commended the Government on the LCDS 2030, which has compiled so comprehensively the many aspects of low carbon development and has set very clear goals for the country particularly relating to biodiversity conservation and the expansion of the national protected areas system. She stated that FZS is very much looking forward to supporting the Government in this area.

With this MOU signing, the Government reaffirms Guyana’s deep and abiding commitment to nature conservation in Guyana.

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