Big increase in hunting fees
Tourist hunters will have to dig deeper into their pockets following the government’s decision to increase the permit fee for its hunting blocks from $27,000 to $60,000 for category I. Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism Ezekiel Maige said that the government had responded to the public outcry by increasing the number of hunting blocks from 158 to 190 and had also categorised the blocks into five depending on the type and number of animals to be hunted. He said Tanzanian applicants are required to produce a bank bond of guarantee to the tune of at least $300,000 and for a foreign owned hunting company a bank bond of $1,000,000 is required.
Experts have predicted that the Tanzania hunting sector could earn some $ 53 million annually – a dramatic increase from the present earnings of $ 20 million This would bring the sector closer to being one of the country’s largest foreign exchange earners.
But no animals!
According to the Sunday News, some 21 of the professional hunters issued with permits under the new regulations have decided to hand their permits back because of the lack of animals in the areas covered. The Minister of Tourism suspects that, apart from ordinary migrations of the animals, poachers may be responsible. The government would step up its efforts to control this he said.