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€700,000 for awareness raising and corporate training
Friday May 27 2022
Engaging businesses in the region to work towards preserving terrestrial and marine biodiversity. This is the goal of the partnership between Cap Business Océan Indien, an association that brings together regional private sector players, and Expertise France, a subsidiary of the Agence Française de Développement (AFD). A financing agreement of €700,000 was signed between the two entities on Friday, May 13, on the sidelines of the International Day for Biological Diversity that is celebrated every year on May 22, as part of the Varuna Program. The goal is to unite a group of development partners around a vital issue: the protection of the biodiversity hotspot in the southwestern Indian Ocean.
These funds will fund the Business for Biodiversity Project, which provides awareness-raising and capacity-building measures for businesses in the region through 2025. The goal is to help them measure their impact on ecosystems, and encourage the adoption of nature-based practices and solutions.
“The unanimous note: Private companies in the region are not fully aware of biodiversity issues, and have fewer tools to measure their environmental impact. With the Business for Biodiversity project, we want to address this through increased awareness, training and technical support. By doing so, we want them to integrate issues related to biodiversity in their management and engaging thinking in their production methods,” explains Virginie Loret, CEO of Cap Business Océan Indien. “We are proud of our ability to count on the support of France’s experts, which gives us the opportunity to participate in the implementation of a component of the Varona programme,” she adds.
For Valentin Grange, Project Manager at France Experts Biodiversity Division, “The exceptional endemic biodiversity of the southwest Indian Ocean forms a strong identity for the region. However, this identity is threatened by the erosion of biodiversity, compromising all ecosystem services. , such as fresh water supply, soil regulation and pollination These ecosystem services are still little taken into account in private sector growth plans. That is why we believe it is necessary to encourage coordinated efforts and support economic players in the region in taking into account the challenges of ecological transformation. Thanks to their activity and ability to structure networks of regional players, Cap Business Océan Indien is the ideal partner to carry out this mission.”
Implementation of this project will be led, in the six district districts, by a soon-to-be-appointed Project Manager. In addition to developing a business plan, he will be responsible for leading a public-private dialogue platform on topics related to biodiversity, natural capital and nature-based solutions. Academics from the region will be closely associated with these exchanges in order to strengthen the relationship between the academic and economic worlds.
Several awareness-raising tools will be developed throughout the program to disseminate knowledge, in particular, corporate environmental impact indicators. Chartered accountants and CSR managers from companies in the region will be trained in social and environmental accounting tools.
For Cap Business Océan Indien, this partnership with Expertise France is part of the strategy presented in the 2021-2026 roadmap, published in November 2021. The association has made biodiversity conservation a cross-cutting priority, at the same time circular economy, inclusion, low-carbon and resilience strategies Business. The goal is to produce a new economic model that is more equitable, sustainable and resilient on a regional scale. The Business for Biodiversity project is made possible by funding provided by France through the French Agency for Development (AFD) and its subsidiary Expertise France.