Peru made a new important effort to mainstream biodiversity conservation into its broader development planning frameworks. In June 2016 the Ministry of Economy and Finance officially approved a new version of the General Guidelines for Public Investment Projects, incorporating a focus on sustainability and highlighting the importance of investing in ecosystem services.
In this updated policy instrument, which serves as the overall framework for all public investment, there are two important and explicit references to biodiversity and ecosystems. The text specifies that biodiversity and ecosystem services are assets that produce goods and services in support of the economic development of the population.
In addition, one of the objectives is to: "Promote public investment projects that aim at generating capital in tourism and culture, conservation, restoration and sustainable use of biodiversity and ecosystem services, as drivers for development."
BIOFIN played an instrumental role in this process, initially proposing the inclusion of biodiversity and ecosystems in the General Public Investment Policy, supporting the dialogue between the Ministry of Economy and the Ministry of Environment, and providing technical assistance in the wording and negotiating of the text.
The Ministry of Environment (MINAM) General Director of Biodiversity said that it is an explicit recognition of the role that biodiversity and ecosystem services play in the country’s economic growth, as well as the political will to promote finance for conservation and sustainable use, thereby placing a value on biodiversity. Secondly, by including biodiversity in the general investment policy, MINAM’s Director of Economic Valuation highlights that biodiversity is now considered as a capital asset like other types of capital administered by the State. Peru already developed specific instruments in 2015 to promote public investment in biodiversity and ecosystems and thanks to this new step the last instruments have a stronger supporting framework that will facilitate their uptake by specific sectors and subnational governments.
This is a successful result of a positive and ongoing coordination between Economy and Environment, a process that UNDP, through BIOFIN, has supported closely. BIOFIN is now developing pilot investment projects to apply the new guidelines to biodiversity conservation and will support capacity building efforts so that public entities are familiar with and able to design and implement biodiversity focused investment