The legal framework on wildlife conservation in Tanzania consists of the Wildlife Conservation Act, the National Parks Act and the Marine Parks and Reserves Act. In Zanzibar, the main law dealing with wildlife is the Forest Resources Management and Conservation Act.
The Wildlife Conservation Act
The Wildlife Conservation Act was enacted in 2009 to make better provisions for the conservation, management, protection and sustainable utilisation of wildlife and wildlife products. It is the main wildlife conservation law in in Tanzania. The scope of application of the Wildlife Conservation Act is limited to mainland Tanzania. The objectives of the Act are, inter alia, to protect and administer wildlife rich areas, protect and conserve wildlife resources and their habitats, promote the contribution of the wildlife sector to the sustainable development of Tanzania, enlarge the wildlife protected areas system and encourage community participation in wildlife conservation.
Section 121 of the Wildlife Conservation Act gives the Minister powers to make regulations prescribing or stipulating matters relating to conservation, management and utilization of wildlife, methods of capturing animals under the Act, forms of application for licences and permits, fees for licenses and permits and CITES matters. Regulations which transitioned from the Wildlife Conservation Act (Repealed) include the Conservation on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) (Implementation) Regulations, 2005 and the Wildlife Conservation (Non-Consumptive Wildlife Utilization) Regulations, 2007. Regulations enacted under the Wildlife Conservation Act include the Wildlife Conservation (Capture of Animals) Regulations, 2010 and the Wildlife Conservation (Dealings in Trophies) Regulations, 2010.
The National Parks Act
The National Parks Act focusses on the management and protection of wildlife in national parks. The aim of the National Parks Act is to provide for the establishment, control and management of national parks. The National Parks Act establishes national parks and creates the Tanzania National Parks Authority (TANAPA) as a corporate body responsible for the administration and management of national parks in Tanzania.
The Marine Parks Act
The Marine Parks and Reserves Act was enacted in 1994 to provide for the establishment, management and monitoring of marine parks and reserves. The Act establishes the Marine Parks and Reserves Unit mandated to establish and monitor the control, management and administration of marine parks and reserves. The Act further establishes a revolving fund for purposes of collecting revenues from marine parks and reserves and funding activities within the management plans of marine parks and reserves. The Marine Parks and Reserves Act provides the legal framework for the conservation, management and wise use of the marine environment.
The Forest Resources Management and Conservation Act
The aim of the Forest Resources Management and Conservation Act is to ensure sustainable management and conservation of Zanzibar’s forest resources. The Act defines forest resources to include all wild animals, wild plants, components of biodiversity and other living and non-living natural resources for which trees provide habitat, shelter or food or which are associated with forest ecosystems. The Forest Resources Management and Conservation Act provides for creation of forest reserves and nature forest reserves in Zanzibar and the creation of a management body for the administration of the forest and nature forest reserves. The Act further provides for conservation of wild animals and plants and specifically legislates on prohibited activities regarding protected animals and plants.