WINDHOEK, Oct. 21 (Xinhua) -- Namibia has been granted 19 million euros (20.2 million U.S. dollars) from the German government through KfW Development Bank as a financial contribution toward community conservation in the Zambezi Region, a senior official has said.
Eight million euros will be allocated to human-wildlife conflict (HWC) mitigation, while 11 million euros are earmarked for mitigating the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic in Namibia's Communal Conservancies, the country's Minister of Environment, Forestry and Tourism Pohamba Shifeta said in a statement on Friday during the launch of the community livelihood development and human-wildlife mitigation project in the Zambezi Region.
According to Shifeta, the increase in the numbers of Namibia's wildlife, especially iconic species such as elephants, crocodiles, lions, hippos and rhinos, is a success story for the southern African country but leads to increasing HWC incidents.
"As a balancing measure, our ministry continues to implement livelihood improvement initiatives to ensure communities benefit from the abundant natural resources in their area," he said.
"These technical solutions and grant programs are community-led and thus empower communities largely affected by HWC in the Zambezi Region," he added.
Beatrice Lucke, country director of KfW Development Bank, said that the protection of Namibia's resources is an endeavor that holds a special place on the agenda of both governments.
"Nature and wildlife in Namibia are not just resources; they are the lifeblood of this land and must be safeguarded for the sake of Namibia and its people," she added. ■