Guiding the future of the Lake Tana Biosphere Reserve
Development of a management and business plan for the future biosphere reserve
According to the "Seville Strategy" and the “Statutory Framework of the World Network”, a management plan needs to be developed for the proposed area to be recognised as a “Biosphere Reserve” by UNESCO. The development of a management plan holds many benefits for the future Lake Tana Biosphere Reserve. It will guide the reserve's establishment and direct its day-to-day workings, enabling its administration and management structures to operate effectively. This management plan should include activities and guidelines for all specific aspects of the biosphere reserve, to ensure that the functions of conservation, development and logistic support are fulfilled. A good management plan ensures a strong linkage and good relationship with existing authorities and institutions and provides a framework for the involvement of all relevant local stakeholders. Existing strategies and policies on local, regional, national and international level, such as polices and action plans on land use, biodiversity, (sustainable) development and protected areas, as well as the Convention on the Protection of Biological Diversity (CBD), will be integrated into the management plan to ensure the different levels of policy and planning work in harmony with one another. Regional development targets and sustainable land use and conservation concepts (no-use/ use management and/or rehabilitation schemes) will be developed for each of the biosphere reserve's zones. These shall take into account the reserve’s zoning and hotspots of biodiversity.
Alongside this, a business plan for the overall proposed BR has to be developed, securing continuous funding and fundraising mechanisms for management, conservation and regional development. The business plan will help the future biosphere reserve be more self-sufficient financially. Ensuring the reserve is managed and maintained on a long-term basis requires sound financial planning. A business plan is being developed based on an analysis of the region's potential opportunities and an estimate of expected costs. The business plan will contain activities such as regional development, the marketing of regional products and the promotion of ecotourism.