Just in time for convention, Tanzania safari operators and hunters get good news from ministry officials.
With DSC’s convention just days away, outfitters from Tanzania were concerned that the proposed cancellation and auction of hunting blocks in their country would result in customers being reluctant to book hunting trips in 2018 and 2019, due to the uncertainty created.
DSC’s President Craig Nyhus and Executive Director Corey Mason wrote to Tanzania’s Minister of Natural Resources and Tourism, the Hon. Hamisi Kigwangalla, on Dec. 22, requesting that the pending auction process, originally scheduled for early 2018, not impact hunts already scheduled, or to be scheduled in 2018. They indicated in the statement that postponement would maximize hunting tourism dollars while the hunting block auction process is being planned.
As a response to DSC’s request, a meeting was held on Dec. 28 in Tanzania. The Minister announced that existing leaseholders will be protected in 2018 and 2019, and hunts in Tanzania may be booked and taken, including hunts already book in past years and scheduled for 2018 and 2019.
By letter to the chairman of the Tanzanian Hunting Operators Association (TAHOA) dated Dec. 29, 2017, Minister Kigwangalla stated:
“In order to allow smooth transition, the Ministry decided to provide two years tenure to all hunting companies. This letter serves to confirm your renewal until 31st December, 2019. Note that, during the two years procedures for auctioning shall take effect.”
Nyhus said, “DSC supports the President’s plan for a qualified and transparent auction process to safeguard Tanzania’s wildlife heritage and promote sustainable use tourism.” He continued, “We are grateful to the Honorable Minister, Permanent Secretary, Director of Wildlife and their team in the Tanzania Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism for taking this quick and decisive action. With just days to go for the kickoff of the hunting industry’s convention season, the current Tanzanian outfitters will be able to conduct business without fear of losing their ability to honor their customers’ trips.”