Seychelles’ journey towards sustainable ocean management and the evolution of SeyCCAT are inextricably linked. Key milestones and lessons have been documented at each stage, outlined in the below timeline.
The people of Seychelles have always been dependent on the ocean. A brief summary of the history the Seychellois people, the islands, ocean ecology and the economy are highlighted here. It contextualises the importance of managing the ocean resources sustainably for future generations.
The effects of the global financial crisis is felt in Seychelles. The Government faced debt repayment challenges with total public debt raising to over 150% of GDP. This debt was subsequently restructured under the Paris Club and Seychelles initiated a five-year economic reform programme to reduce its external public debt.
The Nature Conservancy began discussions with the Seychelles Government to support the restructuring of its debt obligations on more favourable terms in exchange for increased ocean conservation.
Former President James Michel announces Seychelles’ formal commitment to protecting 30% of its Exclusive Economic Zone by 2020. This announcement initiated the Seychelles Marine Spatial Planning Initiative (MSP) to identify key zones for marine protection, as well as how to finance the implementation of the MSP.
Seychelles Government begins the national consultation process under the Seychelles Marine Spatial Planning Initiative to identify high and medium biodiversity zones for protection.
Seychelles Government and the Paris Club of creditors announces the closure of the first debt restructuring for climate adaptation.
The Seychelles Conservation and Climate Adaptation Trust (SeyCCAT) was established as an independent trust to manage the proceeds of the debt restructuring. In preparation SeyCCAT prepares its legal Act, its grant guidelines, investment policy, as well as its social and environmental safeguards policy.
SeyCCAT receives USD 21.6m from The Nature Conservancy, comprising of a USD 5m grant and USD 15.2m in loan capital. SeyCCAT lends USD 20.2m to the Government of Seychelles in order to purchase USD 21.6m of sovereign debt from its creditors at a USD 1.4m discount to face value.
The first loan repayment from the Seychelles Government to SeyCCAT takes place is November, with subsequent repayments scheduled bi-annually.
First call for proposals for the Blue Grants Fund is announced in October with USD 250,000 disbursed in June 2018. Overviews of each project financed are available here.
First USD 15m Blue Bond is launched between the Seychelles Government and World Bank, to finance the fisheries recovery of the Mahe plateau. A detailed explanation of the structure of the Blue Bond is provided, as well as the fisheries analysis that provided the justification for the bond.
Second Blue Grant Fund call for proposals announced in March and grant disbursements from both the debt swap and blue bond proceeds equate to USD 550,000. Projects supported during this call is provided here
A partnership between the SeyCCAT, GOS-UNDP-GEF Protected Area Finance project and SMSP Initiative develops a provisional costing and finance of the expanded marine protected areas under the MSP, based on different management scenarios. This strategic document outlines the options for financing optimal levels of management
Conclusion of the Blue Grants Fund first full funding cycle and evaluation of projects.
SeyCCAT continues to investigate the viability of the possible next finance options to grow its asset base, including a Blue Incubator Fund for emerging entrepreneurs and Environmental Levy. SeyCCAT will also evaluate its current progress and future direction, under a new SeyCCAT Strategic Plan (to be completed by the end of 2020).