Print Edition - 2015-01-18 | Nation
NTNC to manage Acap for five additional years
Jan 17, 2015-The government has extended the management authority of the Annapurna Conservation Area Project (Acap) to the National Trust for Nature Conservation (NTNC) until 2019.
This is the fourth time since the initiation of Acap in 1986 that the NTNC, a semi-autonomous government body under the Ministry of Forests and Soil Conservation (MoFSC), has been given the authority to manage the country’s largest conservation area spread over Manang, Mustang, Myagdi, Kaski and Lamjung and a major revenue generator among the protected areas in the country. In 2013, the government had decided to give last extension to the NTNC’s term for two years after it ten-year term expired twice in 2002 and 2012 respectively.
The MoFSC had sent the proposal to extend the term to the Cabinet, which endorsed it on Friday. The term extension comes at a time when locals as well Acap representatives have been demanding that the management of the area be gradually handed over to the local communities.
According to MoFSC officials, the government has also decided to come up with ways to initiate the process of handover of the management to locals though the NTNC’s term has been extended for the next five years. The officials said the government will come up with activities and programmes to enhance leadership skills and empower local community-led committees and groups to ensure successful management of Acap as envisioned during the inception of the project over three decades ago.
Acap’s successful conservation model is famous worldwide for the leadership and meaningful participation of local communities in protecting natural resources. The area earns around Rs 250 million in revenue annually from visitors as well as Yarsagumba collectors.
Published: 18-01-2015 10:40