How TAWA steers tourism to new heights

TANZANIA has registered tremendous success in conservation and tourism sectors, as Tanzania Wildlife Management Authority (TAWA) with a remarkable increase in tourists, income and reduction in poaching.

There has been noteworthy improvement in tourism services and an increase in income emanating from hunting blocks fees, with a projection to have 5,000,000 tourist and income to the tune of US$6bn by come 2025.

TAWA Conservation Commissioner, Mr Mabula Nyanda said recently that in 2019 the government initiated a new electronic order to allocating hunting blocks that has registered success in several countries, such as Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

The new system means fewer hunting tourists earn the country more funds than many tourists who come to the country for viewing tourism activities and for cultural tourism.

Mr Nyanda noted that TAWA that manages 136,287.06 kilometres of forests is successful in the new system and that there has been an increase in hunting blocks fees by 174 per cent.

First class hunting block that was leased at US$60,000 while now is leased between US$ 151,000 and US$ 285,000. Second class hunting block is now leased at between US$ 81,000 to US$ 250,000 up from US$ 30,000. Third class hunting block now fetches between US 31,000 and US$ 255,000 up from US$ 18,000.

There is currently an increased competition in the hunting blocks, depending on types of the blocks. The new system also offers wider participation of hunting tourists as opposed to the old system that was favouring fewer participants in the blocks auctioning.

Since TAWA came up with the Guidelines for Allocation of Hunting Blocks through Auctioning in 2019 until March this year, seven auctioning have been conducted, involving 100 blocks, leasing 79 blocks that earned the country US$ 3,306,000 – that being 196.4 per cent increase.

As regards to decrease in poaching activities, Mr Nyanda unveiled that TAWA acquired more equipment, with its staffs’ morale boost and improvement of the emergency response unit paid handsomely as the number of elephants killed has gone down to three in 2020/2021 down from 18 in 2016/2017.

In Selous Game Reserve the number of killed elephants dropped to zero in 2020/2021, down from seven that were spotted n 2016/2017.

The number of livestock which enter the conserved areas under TAWA has also gone down due to improved patrols. Between 2016 /2017 and 2020/2021 livestock seized in the said areas went down by 65.5, from 56,708 in 2016/17 to 19,554 in 2020/21.

In a bid to improve relations between TAWA and people living near Ugalla, Moyowosi and Kilombero conserved areas so that they benefit from the areas,. The Authority initiated directives on fishing and beekeeping activities. A total of 870,671,385/- collected from fishing and beekeeping activities, fishing contributing to a whopping 840,672,485/-.

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