World Bank sells first ‘rhino’ bond to aid South Africa’s conservation efforts

The World Bank has issued the world’s first wildlife conservation bond, raising $150 million to help efforts to boost South Africa’s endangered black rhino population, the bank said in a statement Thursday. .

The five-year rhino bond issued on Wednesday will earn investors returns based on the growth rate of black rhino populations in South Africa’s Addo Elephant National Park (AENP) and Great Fish River Nature Reserve ( GFRNR), the bank said.

After five years, investors would get a return of between 3.7% and 9.2% if the population grew. They would get no return if there was no change in the black rhino population, he added.

Black rhinos are two-horned species of the endangered rhinoceros family and are found only in Africa. Between the 1970s and 1990s, their population dropped by 96% to less than 2,500 due to poaching to meet demand for their horns in China and the Middle East, according to Save The Rhino International, a nonprofit organization. profit-making company based in London.

Later, large-scale conservation efforts were undertaken, which led to their increase to between 5,000 and 5,500, according to the Save The Rhino website.

South Africa accounts for about half of the total black rhino population on the continent, according to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), a global non-governmental organization.

“The pay-for-success financial structure protects an endangered species and strengthens South Africa’s conservation efforts by leveraging the World Bank’s infrastructure and track record in capital markets,” said World Bank Group President David Malpass said in the statement.

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