The World Bank will provide Mozambique with US$40 million to finance biodiversity projects in the southern African nation, an official revealed on Monday.
A senior government official in the Administration of National Conservation Areas, Mahomed Ravi told state-controlled Radio Mozambique on Monday that the funding was intended for the construction of tourist facilities, access roads and airstrips in conservation areas.
According to Mohamed, the projects would run for four years and would include mobilising private investment and infrastructure construction to catapult the tourism in conservation areas in Mozambique.
He said the World Bank grant would also support the implementation of the government’s Conservation Areas for Biodiversity and Development Project known as Mozbio.
Mozambique’s conservation areas are made of diverse habitats that include a coastline with some of the most spectacular coral reefs in the world.
The country possesses over 5,500 plant species, 222 mammal and 600 bird species.
Despite such a rich biodiversity, poverty rates are extremely high across the population living within and around conservation areas and the level of revenues from tourism very low.