Seychelles Protected Areas Finance Project

Lead country


Participating countries


Project status

Under implementation

Implementing period

From March 18, 2016 to September 30, 2021

SDGs addressed by this project

SDG targets

  1. 15.a Mobilize resources for biodiversity conservation, sustainable use
  2. 14.2 Sustainably manage, protect, restore marine, coastal ecosystems
  3. 14.7 Increase economic benefits of marine resources to SIDS

Project ID: 4656

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Technical team

  • Ecosystems and Biodiversity Programme

Technical area(s)

  • Strengthening conservation areas
  • Mainstreaming biodiversity


  • Biodiversity financing
  • Wildlife conservation


  • Conserved areas
  • Marine


  • Marine and coastal protected areas
  • Terrestrial protected areas
  • Coral reefs
  • Coasts
  • Large marine ecosystem

Transformed sector(s)

  • Aquaculture
  • Forestry and other land use

UNDP role(s)

  • Capacity development / Technical assistance
  • Data collection and analysis
  • Innovative approaches


  • Finance economy
  • Management operation
  • Governance


  • Nature finance
  • Blue economy
  • Conserved areas/ protected areas management
  • Institutional framework

Social inclusion


Gender equality


Gender result effectiveness scale

  • Gender targeted


  • Systems pathway

Risk reduction target(s)

  • Improve resilience

SDG target(s)

  • 15.a Mobilize resources for biodiversity conservation, sustainable use
  • 14.2 Sustainably manage, protect, restore marine, coastal ecosystems
  • 14.7 Increase economic benefits of marine resources to SIDS

Conventions and protocols

  • Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD)
  • National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAPs)

Private sector(s)


Hot topic


About this project


The Seychelles PA system currently consists of 25 PAs (terrestrial, marine and combined) totalling 55,769 ha. In 2011, Government announced its intent to gazette 7 new areas in the Outer Islands; the gazetting of three new areas in the Inner islands (2 of them privately owned) is underway; the only privately owned island group in the Outer Islands is also seeking PA status. This expands the PA system to 149,045 ha, almost tripling the gazetted area. In addition, 15% of the marine area (a further 200,000 sq km) is to be protected as a no-take zone, mostly in near-shore areas. This major expansion is to be financed at least in part through a Debt-for-Nature Swap agreement. However, while the expansion of the PA system creates the potential for improved protection of the Seychelles terrestrial and marine biodiversity, the financial implications of the expansion and the needs for sustainable management of the existing and expanded system have not been properly considered. The management of Seychelles current PA system is split between several different entities, and is neither integrated nor coherent. Individual sites are managed independently of one another. The management of most sites remains sub-optimal, with the exception of two World Heritage Sites (WHSs) managed by Seychelles Islands Foundation (SIF) and the privately owned PAs. The annual financing gap needed to achieve even basic management of the current PA system is calculated at around $1.6M; for optimal management the gap is at least $5 million. The capacity and financing for even basic management of the new areas is not there. This project will therefore put in place a consolidated framework for the financial, operational efficiency and coherency of the current disconnected assemblage of PAs, designing an integrated new National System of Protected Area, with aligned management standards and efficiencies across its constituent PAs, to ensure sustainable financing in the short- and medium-term, and to provide the basis for the expansion of Seychelles protected area estate in the future. Within a rapidly shifting economic and financial environment for Seychelles, two complementary streams of action will be part of this intervention: improving the generation of PA finance through a suite of mechanisms (Component 2), and improving the delivery of conservation benefits through a more effective use of this finance at the systems level (Component 1).


To improve the financial sustainability and strategic cohesion of Seychelles protected area system, while also dealing with emerging threats and risks to biodiversity in a shifting national economic environment.

USD $2,876,900

Grant amount

USD $15,050,768

Leveraged amount (co-financing)


Source(s) of fund

Sources of fund


  • Global Environment Facility – Trust Fund ($2,876,900)

Implementing partner(s)

  • Government of Seychelles

Project metrics

Related resources

Geospatial information

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Project reports and documentation



Seychelles Protected Areas Finance Project