Before issuing the list, Minister Maige addressed the appeals by several companies challenging the allocations. Those appeals, he said, were still under review, but he did not expect many changes to the allocations listed. I'll report more on that subject in a minute. First, I want to tell you about the plans Minister Maige shared with me after the press conference. Namely, plans to reform the Wildlife Division, plus a system he is implementing to ensure that concession holders meet their various obligations.
According to Minister Maige, he is working to reform the Division of Wildlife into a Wildlife Authority, making it an autonomous entity with the power to make its own decisions and enforce regulations. Another important change is that all the funds generated by hunting would go into the Authority's budget, where now the funds go into the general treasury before being redistributed. These two changes, says the minister, will allow the agency to fund and carry out its initiatives more efficiently, including regulation of the industry and addressing the poaching situation. The change, he said, was being finalized and would be implemented soon.
The other change involves the creation of a block utilization committee that will ensure hunting companies comply with all requirements, including paying fees and filing reports on time, implementing anti-poaching programs and supporting community development. Companies will be graded on a points system that is supposed to reward them for their efforts and investments. For example, while the required annual minimum per company for community development projects is $5,000, companies who invest more will receive more points. Companies with the most points at the end of........(continued)