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Kyrgyzstan|environment|October 31, 2022 / 09:46 AM
Natural Resources Ministry and UNDP launch consultations on new biodiversity conservation priorities

AKIPRESS.COM - The Ministry of Natural Resources, Ecology and Technical Supervision of the KR and UNDP conducted a round table to discuss national priorities of biodiversity conservation and development of the system of specially protected natural areas on October 26. The event was intended to set the scene for further consultations and dialogues on improvement of key strategic policy and legal documents on biodiversity conservation and discussion of forthcoming amendments and additions to the KR law "On specially protected natural areas of the KR".

The event was attended by representatives of the Ministry of Natural Resources, Environment and Technical Supervision of the KR, the Forest Service under the Ministry of Agriculture of the KR, the National Academy of Sciences of the KR, FAO, GIZ, conservation nonprofits, local communities and UNDP, who became familiar with the basic provisions of the state policy in the field of biodiversity conservation and development of the network of specially protected natural areas (SPNA), global trends in biodiversity conservation and obligations of the country under the international treaties. The participants were also introduced to the guidelines for Management Planning of Protected Areas and Implementing Program-Based Budgeting.

Mr. Emil Ibraev, Director of Biodiversity Conservation and Protected Areas Department at the Ministry of Natural Resources, Ecology and Technical Supervision of the KR, highlighted the urgent need for revision of the existing environmental legislation in the field of biodiversity conservation, taking into account current challenges and trends at the global level. He also stressed the main priorities of the state policy in developing a network of protected areas and shared lessons learned from implementation of Action Plan on the Kyrgyz Republic Biodiversity Conservation Priorities for 2014-2020.

During the discussion, participants noted gaps and conflicts in certain provisions of environmental legislation in terms of the lack of a clear delineation of categories of protected areas, the need to include a methodology for determining the anthropogenic, tourist and recreational pressure on protected areas and the maintenance of a systematic database of statistical data in the field of protected areas.

Ms. Monica Rijal, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative, noted in her speech: “UNDP, being the development agency of the United Nations, focuses strongly on positioning nature at the center of development, linking biodiversity and ecosystems, human well-being and resilience for inclusive and sustainable growth. In this regard, UNDP's strategic plan pays particular attention to supporting nations in implementing the SDGs and addressing planetary crises, including climate change, biodiversity reduction, and the pandemic. Among the corporate solutions, the environment pillar intends placing Nature and the Environment at the center of national economy, development, and fiscal planning. UNDP in the Kyrgyz Republic provides comprehensive support to the Kyrgyz Republic by providing comprehensive assistance in the development and implementation of the national environmental policy, in international conservation negotiations and implementing dozens of projects on biodiversity conservation.”

At the end of the roundtable, the participants made a number of proposals on the need for further discussion of the national strategic priorities in the field of biodiversity conservation against the background of global challenges and analysis of the implementation of the country's obligations under international treaties. It was also noted that there was a need to update the national strategy and current legislation on biodiversity conservation to include norms that determine the status of High Conservation Value Forests (HCVF) and regulate the attribution of glaciers and snowfields to protected areas, develop and implement a set of digital solutions for conservation, strengthen eco-education among the population and further expand the dialogue with civil and expert communities to improve the legal framework for protected areas and biodiversity conservation.

The round table was organized and conducted by the Department of Biodiversity Conservation and Protected Areas under the Ministry of Natural Resources, Ecology and Technical Supervision of the KR and UNDP as part of UNDP/GEF Project “Conservation of globally important biodiversity and associated land and forest resources of Western Tian Shan mountain ecosystems to support sustainable livelihoods”.

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