UNDP Iran and Dana Insurance Company sign an agreement to support the Asiatic CheetahJul 6, 2015
“We have gathered here to sign an agreement with Dana Insurance Company and mark yet another milestone our struggle to save the Asiatic cheetah” said Mr. Gary Lewis, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative.
Mr. Lewis was speaking at an event to formalize an agreement between the Dana Insurance Company and the UN Development Programme to support the Conservation of the Asiatic Cheetah Project (CACP) which is implemented with the Department of the Environment. This ceremony took place today at the United Nations Common Premises.
The agreement between UNDP and Dana Insurance Company will activate a form of insurance coverage provided by Dana which will mitigate threats to cheetahs by providing much-needed funding for the implementation of critical aspects of the project’s workplan activities.
Specifically, Dana Insurance will provide up to 500 million Rials to the project each time a cheetah is killed in road accidents or by herder dogs. The money thus realized will go into the project and be used to reduce the threats which killed the cheetahs in the first place. It will be awarded for a maximum of 5 cheetah kills per year.
“The partnership between Dana Insurance Company and the CACP is an excellent example of the positive results that can be achieved when the public and private sectors join forces in pursuit of a common goal”, said Mr. Lewis. “Such cooperation underlines the essence of partnership-building which is required for future sustainable development.”
Dr. Bijan Sadegh, Managing Director and CEO of Dana Insurance Company spoke at the event. He made reference to the Article 50 of Iran’s Constitution which states: “It is our duty to protect the environment in which the current and the future generations will depend on to live.”
He added: “According to the law, any social and economical activity which results in the pollution and the degradation of the environment should be illegal.”
Mr. Sadegh concluded by saying that this agreement can be a step forward for this project, and that him and his team are pleased to be taking part to help save this endangered species.
Recognizing the problem, back in 2001, Iran’s Department of Environment, UNDP and a number of committed national and international partners joined forces to save these emblematic cats through the CACP.
Over the past decade-and-a-half, the project has contributed to reversing the process of extinction for this iconic cat species in Iran, through a number of interventions including local community partnership, support to game guards, strengthening of Iran’s protected areas and research.