The Galapagos National Institute (INGALA) was created in 1980 by the Ecuadorian Government and its mandate strengthened in the 1998 Special Law for Galapagos. INGALA is the governmental office responsible for coordinating regional planning, government funding (national, bilateral and multi-lateral assistance), and technical assistance in Galapagos.
In 1959, Ecuador designated 97% of the land area of Galapagos as a National Park, and then in 1986 the Galapagos Marine Resources Reserve was established, protecting the waters around the archipelago.
The marine and terrestrial biodiversity in Galapagos is affected by an expanding human presence. Over the last 20 years, development of the tourism industry and a boom in fishing have resulted in the growth of the local population from about 10,000 in 1990 to more than 28,000 residents in 2005. New inhabitants bring social and cultural beliefs and behaviors from the continent and are less concerned with environmental issues important to many of the earlier colonists.
Tourism has also played a major role in the increase in population in recent years. The number of visitors has increased from about 41,000 in 1990 to more than 100,000 in 2005. While some tour operators support important conservation initiatives and adhere to strict environmental standards, the tourism industry, as a whole, has not been successfully or permanently linked with conservation of the islands’ resources or local economic stability and equity.
In order to have better control of visitors and migration to the islands, INGALA, the Ecuadorian institution that controls migration to the islands, announced during the Dec 14 2006 session, the introduction of a new visitor control card in Galapagos.
When purchasing or fill the registration for the CONTROL VISITOR CARD, visitors must submit their full name (as it appears in the passport), passport number, nationality and date of birth.
TheTransit Control Card (a.k.a. TCT) is a necessary measure to prevent illegal migration to the Galapagos Islands, which has been determined as one of the main problems that the islands are currently facing. Sangay Touring supports all measures for the protection of the Galapagos Archipelago.