Debt for Dolphins–Protecting the Coral and More

The Seychelles, which depend on tourism and fishing, has announced a first-of-its-kind program to exchange debt for protection of the ocean around its islands. The island nation will create two new marine parks and in return will have a substantial part of its large national debt paid off under a debt swap, according to an article in the Guardian.

$22m of national debt owed to the UK, France, Belgium and Italy was bought at a discount by The Nature Conservancy (TNC), the NGO that has assisted the Seychelles.

TNC also raised $5m from donors to pay off part of the debt and cut the interest rate charged to the Seychelles government on the outstanding loan. This has freed up $12m over the next 20 years to help implement the new marine plan.

The new parks will cover 15% of the Seychelles ocean. Photograph: The Ocean Agency from the Guardian article

This post is part of the We Are the World Blogfest. Cohosts for this month are:  Shilpa Garg, Peter Nena, Eric LahtiRoshan Radhakrishnan and Inderpreet Kaur Uppal. Please check out their posts as well for other non-political good news.

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