Kuando Kubango: US recognizes commitment to biodiversity conservation (Angola)


ANGOP: Agencia Angola Press

Date Published

Menongue – The representative of the American Embassy and USAID member, Paul Mcdormott, recognized today (Monday), in Menongue, capital of Kuando Kubango, the commitment of the Angolan government to the conservation of biodiversity.

Speaking at the presentation act of management plans for the national parks of Mavinga and Luengue-Luiana, he said the government of his country is pleased to support the improvement of conservation and breeding program for the management of these parks.

The diplomat praised the commitment that the Angolan government has to the conservation of the parks, which occupy an area of more than seven million hectares, which implies, in comparative terms, twice the size of Switzerland or half of the Malawi Republic.

He said that the efforts of USAID, the National Biodiversity Directorate within the Ministry of Environment, the National Institute of Biodiversity and Protected Areas, and the provincial government of Kuando Kubango, developed the plan, which focus on allowing the administration of the two parks to improve their conservation and management.

He stressed that the plan provides guidelines for their management during the first years, which will be crucial for long-term success, and explained that in this transitional phase the plans have established a starting point for teams that will work to manage the parks.

Paul Mcdormot said that given the sensitivity of the river basins of the Cuando and Cubango and the increase in the number of wildlife returning to the parks, the creation of the parks’ management plans come at an opportune time, both to improve the conservation of the biological resources of the parks, and to help guide the development of the parks’ infrastructure and help the province and communities around the parks to benefit from the development of tourism.

He reported that economically sensitive and productive areas have been identified, specifically the tourism systems of the Lombam rivers, Luengue and Luiana that feed the river Cuando, as well as the main channel of the Cuito, which will, in his view, be a source of economic gain for the livelihoods of communities living around the parks. He stressed that the national parks of Mavinga and Luengue-Luiana are well positioned to benefit from a cross-border-enabling environment, adding that improving the management of these parks will not only benefit the biological value of Angola, but also the rest of the region by facilitating the movement of wildlife across borders, helping to preserve emblematic aspects such as the African elephant.