Congo identifies prospective new Ramsar sites
Implementation of the Ramsar Convention in the Republic of Congo
A technical workshop organised under the auspices of the Ministry of Tourism and Environment took place in the Republic of Congo on the 30th of March 2007, under the coordination of Mr. Grégoire Moua-Likibi, Permanent Secretary of this Ministry. This workshop aimed at presenting the outcomes of the project entitled "Identification and designation of at least 2 million hectares of new Ramsar sites in Congo" accomplishing the update of the only existing Ramsar site in Congo, 'Lac Tele/Likouala aux herbes'. The above project was jointly financed by the Swiss Grant for Africa (SGA), through the Ramsar Convention Secretariat, and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) through the Global Freshwater Program. It contributed towards the implementation of the Ramsar Convention in Congo, in line with Article 2.1 of the Ramsar Convention text which urges the Contracting Parties to designate suitable wetlands within their territory for inclusion in a List of Wetlands of International Importance.
The workshop brought together 40 participants including Madam Veronique Tshimbalanga (WWF program coordinator) and Mr. Crispin Sedeke (the Ramsar focal point) of the neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo.
Mr. Gilbert Madouka, the Ramsar National Focal Point in Congo, presented the Ramsar Information Sheets and maps for three proposed Ramsar sites which are expected cover a surface area of 6 487 769 hectares as well as information on the update of the only existing Ramsar site in Congo. These proposed sites are Libenga, les Grands affluents and Cayo-Loufoualeba et Conkouati-Douli.
After studying and amending the presented documents, the workshop ended on the same day with the approval of the documents for all four sites by the participants. The Director of the Ministry of Tourism and Environment also expressed gratitude to the Regional Advisor for Africa of the Ramsar Secretariat and the coordinator of the Global Freshwater Program of WWF International for their contribution towards implementation of the project.
The Africa team of the Ramsar Secretariat received the five Ramsar Information Sheets and will review them before final approval for inclusion in the List of Wetlands of International Importance.
-- Evelyn Parh Moloko, Ramsar