BACOMAB : Contribution au capital du fonds fiduciaire du Banc d’Arguin et de la biodiversité côtière et marine en Mauritanie

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CMR 1165_2013- Banc d'Arguin Guillaume Chiron
The Conservation Trust Fund BACOMAB will finance the conservation of the Banc d'Arguin National Park and other Mauritanian coastal and marine protected areas.
FFEM will contribute to the endowment fund and will fund an economic valuation study of the Banc d’Arguin to ensure long term conservation of this world heritage ecosystem.

The ecosystems of the Mauritanian coast are highly vulnerable to a range of human activities including pollution, overfishing, and mining. The coastline is the primary area of human habitationwhich is greatly dependent on the ecological health of marine and coastal ecosystems.
The West African coastal upwelling27 together with the shoals, mudflats and seagrass beds of theBanc d'Arguin support high biological productivity and create unique ecological value, essential for biodiversity at the regional (many fish species and shellfish breeding) and global scale (e.g.migratory birds). This coastal zone contains a wealth of other areas of high ecological value such as the Lévrier bay, maerl and other cold water reefs, and the Senegal River delta.
The long term sustainable conservation of the Gulf of Arguin, the Senegal River delta and otherecologically sensitive areas of the Mauritanian Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) requires responding to the risks of pollution and overexploitation.


BACOMAB is an endowment fund. It’s capital will be invested for perpetuity on capital markets andonly the interest will be used to fund the conservation of management of marine and coastal protected areas. The Mauritanian government has already made an initial contribution to BACOMAB during the period 2010-2011 by mobilizing € 1.5 million of revenues from the fisheriesagreement with the European Union. Funding for the protection of biodiversity from fisheriesagreements is "a first" for Africa and the European Union.

Other innovative funding opportunities will be explored :

  • Contributions from the oil and gas sectors through voluntary compensations or fees attached to concessions ;
  • Fiscal mechanisms in favour of BACOMAB such as a share of fines for fishing infractions or of fishing licences; part of tourism related taxes, environmental fees or licences for industries with possible impacts on marine ecosystems, or a tax on the use of ecosystem services ;
  • Carbon finance, in particular related to the sequestration of carbon in marine ecosystems such as sea grass beds in the Banc d’Arguin (“blue carbon”).

The expected results of the project are:

  • capitalization of BACOMAB’s endowment and thus the long term financing of the PNBA and of other marine and coastal protected areas in Mauritania.
  • FFEM will also fund a comprehensive study of the economic valuation of ecosystem of the Banc d'Arguin, as well as the potential carbon sequestration in the marine part of the PNBA.

These studies will contribute to making the case for continued protection and management of Banc d’Arguin, and provide useful data for establishing further innovative funding mechanisms for BACOMAB.

Project start date
Project end date
Project grant date
5 years
Duration of funding
financing tool
17 200 000 EUR
Amount of the program
1 200 000
Amount of FFEM funding
In progress
Fonds fiduciaire du Banc d’Arguin et de la biodiversité côtière et marine (BACOMAB)
Agence Française de Développement
Institution responsible
Fondation MAVA

Project manager -  Constance Corbier-Barthaux