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7 Oct, 2014

Myanmar Launches Process for World Heritage Nomination of Bagan

YANGON, 7 October 2014 (UNESCO media release)– Myanmar will launch the process to nominate Bagan to the UNESCO World Heritage List with an international consultation meeting to be held from 10-12 October 2014 in Bagan.

The ancient archaeological site is at the top of the country’s priority list for future World Heritage nominations.  The meeting will bring together experts from around the world to discuss the future safeguarding of Bagan under the World Heritage framework with national and local stakeholders. These inputs will be particularly timely in the face of accelerated development at the site caused by a boom in visitor arrivals and tourism-related investment.

The consultation meeting is organized by UNESCO and the Ministry of Culture.  The Minister of Culture, HE U Aye Myint Kyu, will preside at the meeting alongside the Italian Ambassador to Myanmar, HE Paolo Bartorelli.

The meeting is conducted within the framework of the project “Capacity Building for Safeguarding Cultural Heritage in Myanmar”, which is funded by the Government of Italy, the lead donor country supporting Myanmar’s World Heritage efforts.

Starting in 2012, the project was the first UNESCO culture sector cooperation initiative in Myanmar in more than a decade.  Through the project, leading international and national experts on Myanmar cultural heritage are working closely with Myanmar authorities to protect the nation’s important cultural heritage sites within the World Heritage framework and to leverage these assets to contribute to sustainable local development.

The project provided intensive support for Myanmar’s efforts to nominate Pyu Ancient Cities, which were recognized in June this year as the country’s first World Heritage site.  The inscription of Pyu Ancient Cities has been hailed by the international community as a major milestone for Myanmar’s re-engagement with the World Heritage Convention.

Besides Italy, the Governments of Japan and Switzerland are also supporting UNESCO work at Bagan.

Decisions about World Heritage are made by the intergovernmental World Heritage Committee. The Committee consists of twenty-one State Parties who are elected for terms up to six years by the General Assembly of States Parties to the World Heritage Convention at their biennial meeting. UNESCO’s World Heritage Center serves as the Committee’s secretariat.

The media is invited to attend the opening ceremony. Registration will begin at 8:30 at the main meeting room of the Bagan Archaeological Museum in Old Bagan.