Chagres Fund
23 February, 2016
FIDECO Trust Fund
11 March, 2016

Darien Debt for Nature Swap Objectives

Facilitate the conservation, protection, restoration and sustainable use and management of the tropical forests of the Darien National Park and its deadening zone, including up to 5 kilometers in the adjacent areas to the boundaries of the Park.

Based on the Darien National Park Management Plan and Site Plan, the Fund Strategic Plan comprises three strategic lines that guide the investments financed by the Darien Debt for Nature Swap, in priority geographic areas within and in the deadening zone of the Darien National Park:

  • Strategic Line 1: Contribution to Sustainable Community Development in the Darien national Park and its deadening zone
  • Strategic Line 2: Preservation and highlight of the Ecological Values and Ecosystem Services of Darien National Park
  • Strategic Line 3: Administrative and financial consolidation of the Darien National Park

Fund Precedents

On August 25, 2004, the Governments of Panama and the United States of America signed a second Debt for Nature Swap agreement, under the framework of the Tropical Forest Conservation Law, of 1998, of the United States, through which an Environmental Fund that will help the conservation of more than 579,000 hectares of tropical forest in the Darien National Park is created. The Darien National Park was established in 1980 and, in 1981, declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO and in 1983, a Biosphere Reserve, by the Man and Biosphere Program Committee (MaB), also by UNESCO.

The Darien National Park, is of great importance for the conservation of the biodiversity of the country and the world, housing 66% of the fauna species of Panama that are found with some degree of threat (vulnerable, endangered and critically endangered), distributed in the seven (7) ecosystems identified by Berger (2000), in the Darien National Park. Its geological origin gives it the function of biological bridge between the south and north of the continent.

The transaction included a contribution of 1.3 million dollars by The Nature Conservancy (TNC), an international non government organization that supports conservation actions in the Darien area and the contribution of 6.5 million dollars from the US government, to complete a value of 10.9 million dollars of Panamanian external debt.

The patrimonial fund created with this debt for nature swap made it possible to address community environmental initiatives within and in the deadening zone of the National Park, with aim to mitigate the main identified threats on the site.