(MENAFN - Muscat Daily) The Ministry of Environment and Climate Affairs (MECA) has finalised plans to build a state-of- the-art centre to create awareness about Saleel National Park in South Sharqiyah governorate.H E Mohammed bin Salim bin Said al Toobi, Minister the of Environment and Climate Affairs, said that the 220sq km park provides many economic benefits, including from tourism, for citizens in nearby areas.''The centre will be equipped with a hall for lectures, a gallery to display information related to wildlife, a state-of-the-art laboratory, a gifts and souvenirs shop and a restaurant,'' he said.The minister said the plan to develop the reserve has been made keeping tourism activities in mind. ''The park area will be divided into three regions as per its tourism potential. We will ensure that environmental sensitivity, the protection of wildlife in particular, remains top priority when we draw up the tourism plans.''Based on a study by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, the park was declared a protected area because of its natural landscape. ''It was declared a protected area to check overexploitation of wildlife by local population,'' the minister said. H E Toobi said that the park's administration controls the flow of tourists. ''A special team has also been set up to study environmental damage being caused by high tourist activity inside the reserve.'' He said that facilities are also being upgraded to cater to tourists. ''The facilities are being built from environment-friendly material made locally or recycled.'' Meanwhile, an expert from the directorate general for environmental conservation at the ministry has said that the reserve is known for its biological and physical resources. ''It is home to the Arabian gazelle, Omani wild cat (al Sinmar), wolves, red foxes in the nearby mountains and the Egyptian Eagle.''