The MG-CTCI was conceived in the context of the Eco Lubombo Program (ELP) and the development of the Lubombo Eco Trails. The ELP is being implemented by the Lubombo Conservancy, and focuses on 1) the strengthening and expansion of the conservancy using a landscape approach and 2) the development of conservation and ecotourism partnerships with local communities and the private sector.
The Eco Trails initiative was identified as a good foundation for building community based enterprises in the Lubombo region, providing the appropriate business model based on a consolidated transboundary tourism and conservation product to create an outstanding “community destination” based on the region’s remarkable cultural, biodiversity and landscape features. The Mhlumeni and Goba community tourism and conservation initiative is the anchor point for the initiative. The Lubombo Eco Trails has also been proposed by the Lubombo TFCA Integrated Development Planning (IDP) technical team as the basis for the cross border tourism strategy for the LTFCA.
The MG-CTCI has been implemented with various levels of success on the Swaziland and Mozambican sides. The project was evaluated by GIZ in September 2014 and this gave a good indication of project progress, its significant challenges and the type of actions required going forward.