Strengthening Protected Area Financing and Management Systems

What is this project about?

UNDP 2013

In partnership with the Nature Conservation Sector of the Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency, this project aims to establish a sustainable protected area financing system, with associated management structures, systems and capacities needed to ensure the effective use of generated revenues for priority biodiversity conservation needs. It will achieve this objective by strengthening each of the above pillars as follows:

  • Outcome 1: Legal, policy, regulatory and institutional frameworks that facilitate revenue generation, revenue retention and other aspects of sustainable PA financing and management are established and functional.
  • Outcome 2: Levels of financial resource mobilization are adequate to ensure effective conservation-oriented management of Egypt’s PA system.
  • Outcome 3: Business planning and cost-effective management systems are ensuring the effective allocation and management of mobilized resources.

What have we accomplished so far?

  • New institutional structure for Nature Conservation Sector was developed to facilitate revenue generation, revenue retention and other aspects of sustainable Protected Areas financing and management.
  • Integrated Management systems for targeted PAs were developed which clearly identify the required human and financial resources for effective management of the natural resources in PAs.
  • Prepare integrated development plan for both South Sinai PAs and Wadi El-Gimal PA through the provision of visitor facilities.
  • Prepare a PA system financial sustainability plan to be an important part of NCS strategy. It conducts an assessment for PA Status, funding gabs and associated legal provisions; also explores the available revenue generation tools and their retention to secure PA needs. It presents a framework for PA financing policy and strategy with diverse funding resources, effective financial administration, enabling environment, mainstreaming and building capacity. Additionally, it addresses recommendations on institutional reform, defines the required ministerial decree and proposes the factors that motivate PA system development.
  • A new model for Private public partnership (PPP) was prepared to effectively operate the PA visitor center at Wadi El-gemal to assist PA to be self-financed.
  • All procedures for establishment of a separate account for PA revenues were taken; this will be a good indicator of how the interventions of the project could assist in increasing the PAs revenues generated through applying new diversified mechanisms.
  • Constitutions of several countries (Norway, Germany, Brazil and El-Salvador) where nature conservation was part of their constitutions examined and a concept note with additional wording prepared with justifications and sent to many members of the Parliament and the new parties.
  • Presentations were made at the Headquarters of several political parties, including the ruling party, during which project visions were explained and discussed. 
  • Memorandum of Understanding for cooperation between the Ministry of Tourism and Ministry of Environment and Governorate of South Sinai for transferring Sharm El Sheikh city into a green city, with focus on Ras Mohamed National Park (to upgrade diving sites), was signed.
  • An inventory of equipment/ infrastructure for all PA was conducted in collaboration with NCS, where a comprehensive list of equipment/ infrastructure in each PA, showing the current status and needed maintenance, was prepared.
  • Public awareness companies 

Who finances this project?

The Global Environment Facility (GEF)

The Government of Egypt


Delivery in previous fiscal year


US$ 322,402.57


  • Strategically situated at the intersection of three continents, Egypt’s terrestrial and marine habitats support biodiversity of substantial global significance
  • The country’s species representation includes at least 369 species of non-flowering vascular plants, 2,072 species of flowering plants, 10,000 species of insects, 1,422 other invertebrates, 755 fish, 470 birds, 126 mammals,[1] and 118 reptiles and amphibians
  • Egypt hosts a sizeable number of endangered species recognized by IUCN as needing conservation management. At least 143 species of threatened animals are to be found in the country,[2] including the highly endangered Slender Horned Gazelle (Gazella leptoceros) and the Egyptian Tortoise (Testudo kleinmanni). The flora includes 82 threatened species.
  • Protected areas have a potentially critical role to play in reducing threats to Egypt’s biodiversity since they limit (i) conversion and/or destruction of natural habitats; (ii) degradation of natural habitats, and; (iii) unsustainable utilization of biodiversity resources. Existing PAs cover an important and largely representative portion of Egypt’s biologically significant terrestrial and marine habitats.
  • Through strengthening the protected areas financial and management systems, the system is not only better equipped to limit the threat to biodiversity, but it’s an opportunity to develop and promote the concept of ecotourism in the Egyptian economy, especially as ecotourism has gained and continues to gain major attention worldwide by tourists.

Project Overview
Project start date:
Estimated end date:
Geographic coverage:
Ras Mohamed, Saint Katherine, Wadi El Gemal and Wadi el Rayan protected areas
Focus Area:
Energy and Environment
Goal 7- Ensure Environmental Sustainability
Project Officer:
Amany Nakhla
Nature Conservation Sector