Context and objectives
The aim of the MedFund project is to contribute to the long-term management of Mediterranean Marine Protected Areas by strengthening their financial sustainability through the establishment of an environmental fund (or “trust fund”) financing mechanism. It is a unique and innovative financial tool, but also a political dialogue tool for the Mediterranean basin countries and stakeholders, with high potential of evolution to provide multiple services to MPAs such as covering their operating costs. Well-managed MPAs can help reduce poverty and improve well-being.
The Mediterranean basin is identified as a biodiversity hot spot and a global priority ecoregion. For now, the Mediterranean has 1,231 MPAs covering 7.14% of its area. Overall, Mediterranean MPAs are underfunded and/or funded discontinuously, which severely limits their effectiveness, and many MPAs face operational difficulties in functioning, particularly in non-European countries. Currently, the financial resources of MPAs are unpredictable, short-term, and highly irregular.
In this context, the MedFund project aims to contribute to the long-term management of Mediterranean MPAs by strengthening their financial sustainability through the establishment of an environmental fund (or “trust fund”) financing mechanism. The initiative is a 4-year project 100% funded by the promoter and member countries, founded by France, Monaco and Tunisia, and since joined by Morocco, Albania and Spain. The priority for Fund assistance is given to MPAs from the Southern and Eastern shores of the Mediterranean, and the objective is to create an Environmental Fund that will operate throughout the Mediterranean basin through different steps and activities.
€8.4 million in contributions
€6 million in-kind cofinancing
Created in 2015, the Association for Sustainable Financing of Mediterranean MPAs is a non-profit organization based in Monaco. It aims to mobilise public and private stakeholders to promote the development and sustainable management of Mediterranean MPAs. The Association is a platform for cooperation aimed at creating an environmental fund-type financing mechanism. It is composed of States that have confirmed their commitment to an ambitious policy for MPAs and explicitly expressed their support for the initiative (so far, Albania, France, Morocco, Monaco, Tunisia and Spain), regional organizations involved in the conservation of Mediterranean marine and coastal ecosystems (RAC/ASP, MedPAN, WWF-Mediterranean, IUCN-Mediterranean, Conservatoire du Littoral, Initiative Petites Iles de Méditerranée, etc.), from the Prince Albert II Foundation of Monaco and the Oceanographic Institute, Albert I Foundation, Prince of Monaco. The Association thus aims to develop and to improve sustainably the management of Mediterranean MPAs by contributing to their financial autonomy and territorial integration.
- The beneficiaries of the Fund are mainly the managers of MPAs, NGOs, local associations and the bordering populations of the Mediterranean MPAs;
- Fishing and Tourism activities as they are often the main sources of market profits from MPAs.
Lay the groundwork for, establish and structure an environmental fund for
Develop partnerships and communicate around the initiative.
Mobilise the financial resources needed to capitalise the Fund from both public and
private financial partners.
Moderate the development of the initiative.
Finance the first support for Mediterranean MPAs.
Financial sustainability of MPAs.
The possibility of longer-term planning tools and financial support for MPA managers.
Integration of the MPA into its territory.
Reduced poverty and improved well-being: improved fish catches, new jobs, women benefitted.
Fund established for Mediterranean MPAs to mobilise the financial resources needed to capitalise the Fund and to finance sustainably the management of Mediterranean MPAs.
Approaches involve civil society in the planning and management of marine resources.
Better managed MPAs of the participating countries and of the Mediterranean region; financial support provided to cover recurring management costs.