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Sustainable finance for tiger landscapes conference

June 20, 2024

Tiger landscapes are vital to maintaining biodiversity, sequestering carbon, and providing resources to over 100 million people. Tiger conservation is also important for the Global Wildlife Program (GWP), with eight tiger range countries participating in the GWP on topics such as combating illegal trade in tiger parts, building human-tiger coexistence, and restoring and connecting tiger landscapes.

The GWP, funded by the Global Environment Facility and led by the World Bank, was proud to sponsor the Sustainable Finance for Tiger Landscapes Conference in Bhutan on April 22-23, 2024. The conference was hosted by the Royal Government of Bhutan, under the patronage of Her Majesty The Queen, Jetsun Pema Wangchuck, and convened by the Tiger Conservation Coalition, whose member organizations include the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA), Fauna & Flora International (FFI), International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN); Natural State; Panthera, TRAFFIC, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), World Wildlife Fund (WWF), and the Zoological Society of London.


The Sustainable Finance for Tiger Landscapes Conference brought together 200 participants from tiger range countries, private and public sector donors, development partners and conservation NGOs to discuss innovative solutions to sustainably finance tiger landscape conservation.

Due to concerted efforts and partnerships, the global tiger population has rebounded from a historic low of 3,200 to over 5,000 tigers in the wild today. High-level representatives from ten tiger range countries (Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, China, India, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Nepal, Thailand, and Vietnam) delivered statements highlighting this progress and outlining their ambitions for tiger landscapes.

The GEF CEO, Carlos Manuel Rodríguez, delivered a keynote address to open the conference, emphasizing the GEF’s longstanding support for conservation of tigers and their landscapes.


Valerie Hickey, Global Director for Environment, Natural Resources and Blue Economy at the World Bank, provided a video address to open the session on Innovation in Nature Finance. She outlined priorities to scale up and strengthen domestic spending, private sector finance, and overseas development assistance to support tiger landscape conservation. This includes innovative solutions like the GEF and World Bank-supported Wildlife Conservation Bond, a first of its kind outcome-based bond that channels private capital to finance conservation activities in South Africa.

The conference culminated in the Paro Statement which invited participants to work together to catalyze an additional US$1 billion to conserve tigers and tiger landscapes over the next ten years.

GWP tiger range country participants together with GEF leadership. From left to right, standing: Tshewang Dorji, GEF Secretariat; Kesaro Loeung, Cambodia; Mohammad Sajid Sultan, India; Hannah Fairbank, GEF; Dr. Aizalyasni Binti Anuar, Malaysia; Bed Kumar Dhakal, Nepal. Seated: Thunhikorn Somying, Thailand; Nawal Kishor Sah Sudi, Nepal; Carlos Manuel Rodríguez, CEO and Chairperson of GEF; Thi Phuong Vu, Vietnam.


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