Recommended Reading: Guidelines for tourism partnerships and concessions for protected areas: Generating sustainable revenues for conservation and development. Report to the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity and IUCN, 2017. Authors: Anna Spenceley, Sue Snyman, Paul Eagles

Launch of a new TAPAS Group publication at the UNWTO General Assembly Thursday, September 14, 5pm in the QuingYang Room, 5th floor, Chengdu Century City International Convention Center, China

About this publication
This publication is part of a project entitled “Tourism partnerships and concessions in protected areas: Cooperating for success”, executed on behalf of the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) by the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA) Tourism and Protected Areas Specialist Group (TAPAS Group). The project has been enabled by funding provided by the Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety of Germany and by the Government of the Republic of Korea through the Bio-Bridge Initiative.

Excerpt: Legal Framework
Protected area authorities must have staff with the appropriate training in national laws and policies on outsourcing that affect the choice, management and enforcement of contracts. To supplement these, they will also have laws that relate to the governance of protected areas (e.g. by a government, private or community entity), and laws that relate to land tenure and security. In some countries, the law will stipulate what kind of tourism activities can, and cannot, take place in a particular type of protected area. For example, some may permit hunting or night drives in certain types of protected areas, and not in others.

Concessions and partnerships policies should:

• keep tourism in balance with conservation goals, such as outlined in the protected area management plan;

• encourage sufficient volumes of tourism to ensure financial viability;

• set limits for acceptable change associated with tourism; • establish a framework to ensure that these limits are applied fairly and effectively; and,

• create institutional and financial structures to manage tourism revenues.

Protected area managers decide what form of legal instruments to be used for outsourcing; often a combination is used. For example, a tour company may have to purchase a day use permit for each client, obtain a professional guiding licence to show sufficient staff training and liability insurance, and obtain a lease on a parcel of land for the exclusive use of their clients, such as a picnic site.

The process for negotiating a bid and selecting a concessionaire (i.e. the tendering process) is usually long, complex, and expensive for all parties involved. This cost often creates an incentive for the protected area authority to use other approaches, such as long-term contracts, easy methods for contract renewal, or insourcing. The process of choosing the winning tender is typically secret; with only the result being publically announced. In many cases, the resulting contracts are not publicly available.

The high transaction costs (i.e. time and money) needed to tender concessions can encourage some protected area managers to insource the tourism services by using their own facilities. The high transaction costs can also discourage some potential bidders from bidding. The bidder must decide if the cost of bidding can be justified given the potential of long-term benefit of winning the bid.

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  • Is there recorded video from the launch?
  • How was this report prepared?
  • Which park concessions are examples of good practice and … practice that needs to improve?
  • Is there a reason people and places in the photos are not identified?
  • Does this report have a Creative Commons license?

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