Mongolia: Integrated Livelihoods Improvement and Sustainable Tourism in Khuvsgul Lake National Park Project

Sovereign Project | 48216-001 Status: Approved

Summary

Khuvsgul Lake National Park (KLNP) in Khuvsgul aimag supports a rapidly expanding but uncontrolled tourism industry, and a small local population which is poor, receives few benefits from tourism, and is dependent on subsistence use of natural resources. The proposed grant will support local livelihoods through improved capacity for sustainable tourism and subsistence activities, in participation with the park administration and other key stakeholders. The project design adopts an integrated approach for livelihoods, tourism, waste management, and land use planning, and will serve as a model for other protected areas in Mongolia.

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Project Name Integrated Livelihoods Improvement and Sustainable Tourism in Khuvsgul Lake National Park Project
Project Number 48216-001
Country Mongolia
Project Status Approved
Project Type / Modality of Assistance Grant
Source of Funding / Amount
Grant 9183-MON: Integrated Livelihoods Improvement and Sustainable Tourism in Khuvsgul Lake National Park
Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction US$ 3.00 million
Strategic Agendas Environmentally sustainable growth
Inclusive economic growth
Drivers of Change Governance and capacity development
Partnerships
Sector / Subsector

Agriculture and Natural Resources - Agriculture, natural resources and rural development

Gender Equity and Mainstreaming Effective gender mainstreaming
Description Khuvsgul Lake National Park (KLNP) in Khuvsgul aimag supports a rapidly expanding but uncontrolled tourism industry, and a small local population which is poor, receives few benefits from tourism, and is dependent on subsistence use of natural resources. The proposed grant will support local livelihoods through improved capacity for sustainable tourism and subsistence activities, in participation with the park administration and other key stakeholders. The project design adopts an integrated approach for livelihoods, tourism, waste management, and land use planning, and will serve as a model for other protected areas in Mongolia.
Project Rationale and Linkage to Country/Regional Strategy

The KLNP was established in 1992. It encompasses 1.2 million hectares of forests and mountains which surround Khuvsgul Lake, one of the most important reservoirs of fresh water in the world. It is the largest freshwater lake in Mongolia and contains 70% of Mongolia's fresh water and 1% of global fresh water. The lake is also of trans-boundary importance as it drains via the country's largest river, the Selenge, into Baikal Lake in the Russian Federation.

The KLNP is becoming one of the most popular tourism destinations in Mongolia, and tourist numbers and facilities are expanding rapidly. From 2010-2014, annual tourist visits to the KLNP rose from 11,000 tp 60,000 due to improved road access and reduced visa restrictions. Although no projections for furutre growth are available, Khuvsgul aimag and the KLNP are targeted as a key region for the development of tourism and associated infrastructure, and growth is expected to continue.

Achieving sustainable tourism and which benefits local livelihoods and does not impact on biodiversity conservation raises significant challenges: (i) tourism-related expansion is largely occurring in the absence of planning - there is no framework for coordination among the KLNP Administration, communities, and tour operators (the key stakeholders in the KLNP), nor any shared vision, targets, or codes of conduct for tourism; (ii) districts within KLNP are some of the poorest in Mongolia, yet most communities currently have limited capacity or resources to access tourism-related benefits; (iii) uncontrolled sewage and litter from tourism is threatening the lake water quality; and (iv) for many residents in the park, livestock grazing will continue to be a principal livelihood, yet these benefits are declining due to over-grazing.

Government and donor initiatives are addressing some of these issues, but the need to support community-based tourism and waste management in the KLNP is widely acknowledged by government, communities, and tour operators.

At the national level, there is an urgent need for an integrated approach to balance livelihoods, tourism, waste management, and biodiversity conservation within protected areas. Government efforts to expand tourism are centered on Mongolia's unique wilderness values and large network of protected areas, which comprise 18% of the country's area. These are generally located in poor regions with limited infrastructure, which presents challenges for maintaining ecological values, providing benefits to communities, and sustainable tourism. Few such models are available, and the project will be among the first in Mongolia to address the linked issues for livelihoods, tourism, and waste management in a protected area. New participatory mechanisms for the KNLP will be piloted, including co-management approaches for tourism and waste management and community-led revolving funds for livelihood improvement.

Impact

(i) Per capita income in five soums of Khuvsgul aimag increased (Khuvsgul Aimag Socio-Economic Development Action Plan);

(ii) Management of natural resources in the KLNP improved (KLNP Management Plan)

Project Outcome
Description of Outcome Livelihoods and sustainable tourism in five soums of the KLNP improved and integrated
Progress Toward Outcome
Implementation Progress
Description of Project Outputs

Community-based tourism in Khatgal and Khankh settlements promoted

Capacity for sustainable livestock and pasture management in the KLNP and buffer zone improved

Waste management around Khuvsgul Lake strengthened

Status of Implementation Progress (Outputs, Activities, and Issues)
Geographical Location
Safeguard Categories
Environment C
Involuntary Resettlement C
Indigenous Peoples C
Summary of Environmental and Social Aspects
Environmental Aspects An environmental assessment and review framework (EARF) has been prepared and includes an environmental management plan (EMP), which describes the environmental safeguard screening, management and reporting procedures to be applied to all activities supported by the project.
Involuntary Resettlement The project does not involve involuntary resettlement or land acquisition.
Indigenous Peoples Khuvsgul aimag supports Mongolia''s only population of the Dukha ( reindeer people ), a vulnerable ethnic group. Their settlements are located over 50 kilometers west of the KLNP. Some families visit Khuvsgul Lake to sell locally-made or imported handicrafts (souvenirs) to tourists. They camp on access roads and do not stay long, partly due to the grazing feed requirements of their reindeer, which are not available in the lake area. The Dukha do not have permanent or regular seasonal settlements, or traditional migration routes, in the KLNP, and do not practice livestock herding. The project is not anticipated to result in impacts to the Dukha, but nonetheless, the design of eco-tourism activities will include culturally-sensitive approaches.
Stakeholder Communication, Participation, and Consultation
During Project Design Khuvsgul Lake is revered in Mongolia and is a high-profile area subject to frequent media coverage. A project stakeholder communication strategy has been prepared. The strategy describes target audiences and media approaches, including public events and workshops.
During Project Implementation As above.
Business Opportunities
Consulting Services The project is expected to require 3 person-months of one international consultant and 487 person-months of 16 national consultants for project implementation. These 17 positions comprise seven administrative staff (PMU manager, PIU field coordinator, Khankh officer, implementation specialist, accountant, procurement specialist, driver) and 10 specialists. The executing agency will engage all the consultants through individual consultant selection method, following ADB's Guidelines on the Use of Consultants (2013, as amended from time to time).
Procurement The PMU, on behalf of the executing agency, will be responsible for procurement. All procurement financed by the JFPR grant will be carried out in accordance with ADB's Procurement Guidelines (2015, as amended from time to time) and Mongolia's Ministry of Finance (2014) Procurement Manual. The selection and engagement of contractors for works, goods, and/or consulting services to be financed by the grant will be subject to ADB approval.
Responsible ADB Officer Mark Bezuijen
Responsible ADB Department East Asia Department
Responsible ADB Division Environment, Natural Resources & Agriculture Division, EARD
Executing Agencies
Ministry of Environment,Green Development &Tourism
Government Building II, United Nation's
Street 5/2, Chingeltei District,
Ulaanbaatar 15160, Mongolia
Timetable
Concept Clearance 08 May 2015
Fact Finding 04 Jun 2015 to 21 Jun 2015
MRM 22 Jul 2015
Approval 07 Dec 2015
Last Review Mission -
Last PDS Update 16 Nov 2015

Grant 9183-MON

Milestones
Approval Signing Date Effectivity Date Closing
Original Revised Actual
07 Dec 2015 - - 30 Jun 2020 - -
Financing Plan Grant Utilization
Total (Amount in US$ million) Date ADB Others Net Percentage
Project Cost 3.18 Cumulative Contract Awards
ADB 0.00 07 Dec 2015 0.00 0.00 0%
Counterpart 0.18 Cumulative Disbursements
Cofinancing 3.00 07 Dec 2015 0.00 0.00 0%

Safeguard Documents

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Safeguard documents provided at the time of project/facility approval may also be found in the list of linked documents provided with the Report and Recommendation of the President.

Evaluation Documents

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