Partnership between French Agency for Development and IUCN: Biodiversity as a stepping stone for development

21 March 2014 | News story

IUCN and AFD, the French Agency for Development, recently signed an agreement for EUR 2.6 million (CHF 3.18 million). The funds will contribute to the implementation of three thematic programmes chosen to reflect France’s international priorities in conservation.

The three programmes include biodiversity conservation in Sub-Saharan Africa, protection and restoration of oceans, islands and European Overseas territories and support to the global governance of biodiversity.

As part of the agreement, IUCN and AFD will collaborate to reinforce the efficiency of the network of protected areas in Africa, a goal which requires some capacity building for protected area managers. The two partners will, in particular, continue supporting the two degrees they developed within the Senghor University in Alexandria, Egypt: a Master’s degree and a shorter two-year university qualification.

On oceans, IUCN and AFD will collaborate with the European Commission to create a fund dedicated to the preservation of overseas biodiversity. In terms of governance, they will collaborate with the network of financial institutions dedicated to development, such as the World Bank and the International Finance Corporation (IFC), as well as the African Development Bank, to create a common instrument in order to measure the biodiversity footprint of investment projects.

These collaborative projects are part of the larger partnership between France and IUCN, which includes three French Ministries: Foreign Affairs, Environment, and Overseas. The partnership started in 2005 and was renewed for another four years in June 2013. Its overarching aim is to provide French and francophone expertise in the pursuit of the commitments made by the international community as part of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD).

AFD: The French Agency for Development is one of IUCN’s nine framework donors. AFD is committed to investing 160 Million Euros (CHF 195 Million) per year on biodiversity projects and has developed a biodiversity strategy applicable to all projects.