A capacity building workshop for tiger range countries was organized (from 13- 15 December 2016) by the Global Tiger Forum (GTF), in association with the Global Tiger Initiative Council, World Bank, Wildlife Conservation Trust (WCT) and World Wildlife Fund (WWF) with technical support from the Indian Institute of Forest Management (IIFM) and Wildlife Institute of India (WII) at Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The workshop was attended by senior frontline officials from several Tiger Range Countries (Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Thailand, Russia and Vietnam). The workshop was organized with a view to provide a detailed insight and gather country level inputs and feedback
Dr. Rajesh Gopal, Secretary General (GTF) gave the welcome remarks and mentioned about the significance and the need for a differentiated approach towards tiger landscape conservation. Mr. Keshav Varma, CEO and Executive Director, GTIC praised the efforts of Malaysian Government on implementing principles of Smart Green Infrastructure, especially the design and construction of eco-viaducts to facilitate wildlife movement. He also stressed on the need for sharing of best practices through a knowledge sharing platform. Mr. Hasnan Bin Yusop, Deputy Director General II, DWNP, Govt. of Malaysia, welcomed the delegates and resource-persons attending the workshop and that the workshop provided an opportunity for an effective dialogue on developing and implementing the draft manuals in range countries. A presentation showcasing landscape conservation efforts in the central forest spine of Malaysia was given by Dr. Pazil bin Abdul Patah, Director of Biodiversity Division, DWNP, Govt. of Malaysia.
The technical presentation were given by following renowned scientists and officials:
- Dr. Bilal Habib, Scientist, discussed the framework of the technical guidelines for habitat and prey restoration.
- Dr. Y.V. Jhala and Mr. Qamar Qureshi, Scientists, Wildlife Institute of India, presented the protocols describing methods for monitoring habitat quality and wildlife populations.
- Dr. Vaibhav C. Mathur, AIG, National Tiger Conservation Authority of India gave an overview of designing a landscape level tiger conservation plan as well as described ways for prevention and management of tiger/wildlife diseases.
- Dr. Rajesh Gopal, Secretary General, GTF presented a detailed insight into tiger landscape management, mentioning strategies for land use planning and coordination between stakeholder agencies across tiger landscapes, including core critical tiger habitats, multiple use habitats and corridors.
- Dr. S.P. Yadav, Assistant Secretary General, GTF presented an overview of the Conservation Assured Tiger Standards (CA|TS) and its application both in protected areas as well as forest areas outside protected areas.
- Dr. Anil Kumar, Director, Indian Institute of Forest Management introduced the concept of economic valuation of economic valuation.
- Dr. Madhu Verma, Professor, Indian Institute of Forest Management led the sessions on economic valuation of tiger landscapes, which included an introduction to some measurable ecosystem services across tiger landscapes and review of studies undertaken in tiger landscapes, as well as detailed insight into the techniques/methodology for conducting such a study in tiger landscapes and communication results to various stakeholders.
The technical sessions were followed by a valedictory ceremony, that involved the distribution of certificated and concluding remarks by Dr. Rajesh Gopal and Mr. Keshav Varma, CEO and Executive Director, GTI Council.