tourism and conservation

Wildlife also plays critical ecological functions that are important for the interconnected web of life supporting systems, in addition to its socio-cultural and aesthetic values. Rwanda’s wildlife protected areas significantly contribute to the production of global public goods and services, such as protection of biodiversity, climate stabilization, carbon sequestration and global waters. Rwanda’s major rivers originate or flow through wildlife-protected areas. Nyungwe National Park is known as the furthest source of the Nile.

Thus, any adverse impacts on the ecosystems can dramatically and negatively alter humans’ capacity to survive. Rwanda has developed a wildlife policy to ensure the sustainability and protection of its wildlife whilst addressing challenges faced by biodiversity conservation.
Environment generally, and conservation in particular cannot be regarded as a “by the way”.
They are one of the most important pillars, if not the most important, of sustainable development and deserve to be attributed priority in development dialogue, national policy and planning processes and in allocation of resources. This Wildlife Policy provides a regulatory framework upon which, new strategies, approaches and partnerships for conservation shall be based, to ensure the survival of the parks and wildlife, and of the goods and services they provide.

Achievements in Wildlife Conservation

Considerable gains and progress have been achieved over the last years. With better management and protection, community and regional and international partnerships, prominent conservation achievements have been realized.
Wildlife populations, including that of the Mountain Gorillas have been on a steady increase over the last years. Protected areas are now better managed, and their ecological integrity more assured and there is a need to increase a number of those areas.

 Revenues from parks and eco-parks tourism steadily increased, making significant contributions to the national economy and to local livelihoods of the communities neighboring the parks through different created community based projects and infrastructures such as hospitals, schools and water provision, in order to increase the social welfare of the surrounding communities. This policy seeks to address the challenges and build on the achievements in order to move wildlife conservation in Rwanda to a higher possible next level.