Expanding Ocean Protection in Zanzibar

Blue finance is partnering with the Ministry of Blue Economy & Fisheries, Zanzibar to enhance Marine Conservation and Blue Economy of the Pemba Channel Conservation Area.

On August 21st, Blue finance and its local sister entity, Blue Alliance Zanzibar, signed a long-term collaborative management agreement with the Ministry of Blue Economy and Fisheries of the Revolutionary Government of Zanzibar for the northern part of the Pemba Channel Conservation Area (PECCA). This agreement aims to protect 17,000 ha of marine ecosystems and contribute to the island’s blue economy.

Protection of the Coral Reef Ecosystem

This partnership will enhance the protection of 18,000 hectares of spectacular coral reef ecosystems, improve the direct livelihoods and food security of an estimated 8,000 households (most of them below poverty level), and increase climate change resilience.

Blue Economy Initiatives

By way of this agreement, Blue Alliance Zanzibar will implement a number of sustainable blue economy initiatives. A key focus is the inclusion of local communities in the development of small-scale aquaculture facilities, ecotourism programmes and fishery improvement projects. The project will enhance PECCA’s financial sustainability, have a positive impact on the local economy, benefit small-scale fishers, create new jobs, improve the visitor experience, and contribute to the effective long-term management of the Conservation Area.

This multi-faceted approach will not only bolster PECCA’s financial sustainability but also stimulate local economies, create employment opportunities, enhance visitor experiences, and fortify the long-term management of the Conservation Area.

“The Blue Corridor will usher in a new form of public-private partnership in marine conservation in Zanzibar, based on a win-win co-management strategy centered around the welfare of the local communities as well as the preservation of the pristine marine biodiversity and ecological hotspots within the PECCA domain. This is what the Sustainable Blue Economy agenda, driven by the President of Zanzibar and the Chairman of the Revolutionary Council, Dr Hussein Ali Mwinyi, is all about.” – Dr Aboud Jumbe, Principal Secretary of the Ministry of Blue Economy and Fisheries, Zanzibar

Four Fundamental Fields of Operation

Through a collaborative management structure, the Ministry of Blue Economy & Fisheries and Blue Alliance PECCA will share management responsibilities via a public–private partnership agreement and work together in four fundamental fields of operation:

  • community development through employment, micro-enterprise development, and empowerment;
  • wildlife monitoring and conservation through robust science;
  • revenue stream development through sustainable tourism, sustainable fisheries, and responsible aquaculture; and
  • compliance through supporting patrols, community engagement, and awareness campaigns.

“We believe a new model for marine conservation must emerge — one that challenges the status quo. The blue economy collaborative approach initiated today could be transformative for MPAs and precedent-setting for marine conservation and economic development in the Sub-Saharan region and worldwide.” – Nicolas Pascal, Executive Director of Blue finance

Redistributing the Financial Burden

This agreement redistributes the financial burden and is aimed at attracting the long-term economic and technical support needed for effective management.

With the support of the Global Fund for Coral Reefs (GFCR), Ocean Risk and Resilience Alliance (ORRAA), several impact investors and donors, Blue finance has established an MPA blended finance facility. The facility will provide adequate up-front and early-stage blended capital for Blue Alliance – Zanzibar. The blended finance facility will work towards making PECCA financially sustainable and more independent from traditional funding (grants, public money).

Blue finance has already demonstrated the viability and benefit of this kind of blended finance facility in other locations, showing that this kind of agreement can improve financial and ecological sustainability, thereby reducing the need for public subsidies. The approach presents an innovative and scalable approach that uses catalytic and development finance to mobilise commercial impact finance into Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) to strengthen natural resource management, improve food security, promote sustainable development, and enhance climate change resilience.

“The action [of signing the agreement] has been taken with the aim of reducing the damage to this important area for fishing and tourism as well as increasing income for the Government and the communities surrounding the area.”Hon. Mudrik Ramadhan Soraga, Minister of State Office of the President Labor Economy and Investment

The partnership aligns with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) 1, 13, 14, and 17, addressing poverty, climate action, life below water, and partnerships. Performance will be assessed against best-practice impact standards.

Made possible with the support of the Global Fund for Coral Reefs, Ocean Risk and Resilience Alliance (ORRAA), and the Ministry of Blue Economy and Fisheries of the Revolutionary Government of Zanzibar.

Share this article with friends:


Explore more articles

Join our mailing list

"*" indicates required fields

Which regions are you interested in?*
Which topics are you interested in?*