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General News Sat, 17 Nov 2007

Ghana signs two contracts with EU

Accra, Nov. 17, GNA - The European Commission and the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning have signed two works contracts worth 2.6 million GH cedis for the construction of the Headquarters and Range Camps in Ankasa and Bia Conservation areas, both in the Western region. A statement issued by the Delegation of the European Union in Ghana on Friday said the projects were part of the activities of the Protected Areas Development Programme Phase II (PADP II) being financed under the ninth European Development Fund.

It said, the project was aimed at ensuring the long-term conservation of the Ankasa and Bia Protected Areas through the implementation of the Management Plans, strengthening of capacity of the Wildlife Division and supporting preparatory concepts of sustainable management and utilisation of natural resources in off-reserve areas to empower civil society and reduce poverty. It explained that the PADP II was designed to consolidate and extend on and off-reserve achievements of the first phase of the PADP project, particularly securing long-term management prospects for the protected areas.

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This would be achieved mainly through further improving the conservation and management capacity of the Wildlife Division of the Ministry of Lands and Forestry and by complementing park infrastructures for administration and tourism.

It said off-reserve conservation was expected to centre on expansion of the preparatory concepts developed during the first phase to a wider area surrounding the target areas, while programme for eco-tourism development and income-generating activities would also contribute to reduced poverty in the surrounding rural communities. "The phase II of the PADP is therefore designed to ensure the effective management of both the Ankasa and Bia Conservation Areas as well as the Krokosua Hill Forest Reserve and ensure long-term prospects for raising substantial revenues, including the development of appropriate tourism attractions among others," the statement said.

Source: GNA
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