Sustainable tourism in Madagascar

Madagascar: Conservation and sustainable use of natural resources

Madagascar is the fourth biggest island in the world and lies off the coast of Mozambique in the Indian Ocean. The island's relative isolation has meant that a unique and especially rich diversity of flora and fauna has developed there. But large parts of this natural paradise have already been destroyed as a result of human intervention. Most of the people are extremely poor. Their demand for food and fuel wood has led to extensive deforestation and land degradation.

Expanding the tourism value chain

Under a project supported through German development cooperation, efforts are under way in collaboration with the Malagasy government to create a framework for protecting biodiversity and promoting sustainable forms of natural resource management.

One focus of the project is the development of a tourism value chain in protected areas. Together with local people, special offers and routes are being developed that will allow visitors to explore Madagascar's natural heritage.

In the three regions of Atsimo-Andrefana, Boeny and Diana, local tourism is being fostered through a variety of activities, such as training programmes, the improvement of infrastructure, and the marketing of local tourism attractions at the national and international levels.

Local people benefit

Natalia Vega talks about her work in Madagascar

Natalia Vega works for the German government. In Madagascar, she is involved in a project for the protection and sustainable use of natural resources, where she develops tourism programmes that benefit local communities.