by B. von Droste
               Director, UNESCO World Heritage Centre

1. Introduction

     It is my privilege and a pleasure to address you on behalf
of UNESCO 's World Heritage Centre at this seventeenth session of
the World Heritage Committee. Before submitting to you the report
of the Secretary of the World Heritage Committee, which
highlights some of the points presented in greater detail in the
working documents prepared for this meeting, allow me first to
welcome the delegations from the 21 States Party to the
Convention, seven of them newly (re)elected to the Committee. My
heartiest welcome is addressed also to the representatives of
other States Parties, attending as observers, and to the experts
from the three advisory bodies to the Committee, namely ICCROM,
ICOMOS and the IUCN, and the observers from several other
international organizations which cooperate with us in the
implementation of the World Heritage Convention.

     May I use this opportunity also to thank most warmly, on
behalf of my colleagues and personally, to our generous hosts,
the Government of Colombia and, more specifically the Instituto
Colombiano de Cultura (COLCULTURA), who have made it possible for
the Committee to meet in this wonderful city, Cartagena. Their
organizational eagerness and overall friendliness will indeed be

     I should also like to thank most sincerely the outgoing
President of the Committee! Mr Robert Milne, whose personal
committment and efficiency have been of great help to the World
Heritage Centre in these past twelve months. Our thanks, of
course, are addressed also to the members of the outgoing Bureau
for the excellent work they have done during their mandate.

     My heartiest congratulations, naturally, are addressed to
the new Chairperson, and the new Bureau. On behalf of UNESCO's
World Heritage Centre, I wish to assure you that you can count
on our full support in the important and, sometimes, difficult
tasks ahead of you.

     Last, but certainly not least, may I welcome the two new
States Parties, namely, the Czech Republic and the Slovak
Republic, which have joined the Convention since our last meeting
in Santa Fe.

     Before reviewing as briefly as possible the activities that
have been undertaken since the sixteenth session, I am pleased
to inform you that the ninth General Assembly of the States
Parties to the Convention took place at UNESCO, on 29th and 30th


October 1993, during the General Conference of UNESCO. The
meeting was chaired by Ambassador Leventis of Cyprus. At the end
of nine ballots, the following states were elected to the

Brazil, France, Italy, Japan, Lebanon, Niger and the United
States of America. May I warmly congratulate the new members.

     The General Assembly, however, also decided that the
procedure for election, as presently in force, was no longer
adequate as it was too time consuming; it therefore asked the
Secretariat to study possible amendments to the rules, including
ways to assure an equitable representation of the various regions
of the world.

     The General Assembly furthermore examined the state of
accounts of the World Heritage Fund. It felt that the budget
presentation could be improved, and in that respect, it took note
with satisfaction that the World Heritage Committee would study
this matter. The Committee's Chairman presented to the General
Assembly the Committee's report to UNESCO's General Conference,
whereupon the Assembly expressed its wish that more time should
be devoted in the future to discussions of substantive nature.

     Lastly, the Assembly decided to launch an appeal in favour
of safeguarding the heritage threatened by war and civil unrest,
and it urged all States Parties to strengthen public awareness
through education programmes and the mass media.

2. Activities undertaken since the sixteenth session

     As stated in my introductory remarks, the full record of the
past twelve months is given in the working documents which you
have received for this meeting. Let me therefore highlight here
only some of the points which may require particular attention
on your part.

     The finalization of the Report of the sixteenth session of
the Committee (which, I hope, you have all received) demanded more
than usual effort and time, given the fact that its 80-odd pages
attempted to reflect as accurately as possible the very rich
debate of the Santa Fe meeting. As I indicated in my report to
the Bureau (June 1993) perhaps the most important part of this
report is its Annex II: the Strategic Orientations, as defined
and adopted by the Committee.

     In order to put into practice the Strategic Orientations,
the Centre has been working on the modification of the
Operational Guidelines and several propositions for amendments
were submitted to the Bureau at its June session. Two States
Parties had made specific proposals in this regard, which were
discussed with all other proposals by the Bureau. The Committee
is invited to examine these proposed amendments under Item 14 of
the provisional agenda, and to take a decision. Allow me,
however, to point out that the main modifications concern:


     * the role of the Committee regarding the monitoring of World
Heritage properties and its power to implement direct action in
emergency cases; the Committee's final decision regarding
monitoring will have to take into consideration the discussions
which you will have during this session under Item 7 of the

     * the time-table foreseen for the evaluation of new
nominations: it is proposed that the Bureau meets in September
rather than in June in order to allow more time to the Advisory
Bodies for their evaluations;

     * the allocation of technical assistance during the year: it
is proposed that the Chairperson of the Committee or the Bureau
can decide about funds up to only 20% of the total budget
allocated by the Committee for technical assistance.

At its sixteenth session, as you will recall, the Committee
adopted revised cultural criteria of the Operational Guidelines
in order to include the protection of outstanding cultural
landscapes. Immediately thereafter, the Centre invited all States
Parties to submit by 15 August 1993 tentative lists including
cultural landscapes. Although more than 30 States Parties
responded to the request, only 14 of them submitted new tentative
lists, and of these only 9 States Parties included cultural
landscapes, while 9 others notified the Centre that they are in
the process of preparing tentative lists in light of the recent
revisions of the cultural criteria.

     Furthermore, the Centre convened an international expert
meeting on the questions concerning cultural landscapes,
tentative lists and related issues, which took place in Templin
(Germany) last October. The meeting discussed three categories
of cultural landscapes and addressed specific legal, management,
socio-economic and conservation issues, related particularly to
living cultural landscapes. A more detailed report is given in
document 002/9. Let me just point out that there is general hope
that the results of this meeting will form the basis for future
identification and assessment of cultural landscapes of
outstanding universal value. The Committee may therefore wish
to adopt recommendations for further action by the World Heritage
Centre and the Advisory Bodies.

     After the seventeenth session of the Bureau, the Secretariat
proceeded with an analysis of the tentative lists that have been
submitted by States Parties over the years. The results of this
analysis show:

     * of the 136 States Parties, only 60 (44%) have presented, in
one form or another, tentative lists. Almost 50% of these
tentative lists include cultural properties only. The States
Parties which have not submitted a tentative list are listed in
Table C of the working document 002/7 prepared for this session.

     * Of the 60 tentative lists on file, 31 (i.e., 23% of the
total number of States Parties) provide the information as


requested in Article 11 of the World Heritage Convention and/or
paragraphs 7 and 8 of the Operational Guidelines. The States
Parties concerned are listed in Table A of the afore-mentioned
working document.

     In order to improve this situation and to establish
meaningful and useful tentative lists, the Secretariat requests
the Committee to consider several proposals stated in document
002/7, page 3, of which I wish to emphasize particularly the

     "During the next two-year period the highest priority will
be given to the establishment and/or revision of tentative lists
in accordance with the stipulations in the Operational Guidelines
paras. 7 and 8. Active collaboration with the States Parties
will be sought and preparatory assistance will be provided when
necessary and upon request by the State Party concerned."

     The main results of the sixteenth session of the Committee
were reflected also in the first issue of The World Heritage
Newsletter (I hope that you have all received it) which has been
distributed in 9,000 copies (English and French) and has had an
undeniable success. A generous grant from the Norwegian Ministry
of Environment has made it possible to continue producing the
Newsletter. Its third issue has just appeared, and is being
distributed at this session. As indicated in the working document
on promotional activities, the Committee may wish to express its
gratitude to the Government of Norway for this support.

     As requested by the Committee at its sixteenth session, the
Centre convened an expert meeting on the concept and framework
for systematic monitoring of natural, cultural and mixed World
Heritage sites. A detailed report, including specific proposals
for the implementation of a systematic monitoring programme are
presented in working document 002/4. May I simply point out that
one of the main conclusions of this expert meeting is that
continuous monitoring of the state of conservation of a site is
an integral part of the conservation and management process, and
that the States Parties are responsible for its implementation.
Periodic reporting in collaboration with an independent expert
or agency is recommended, however, in order to update the
baseline information on the site, to set future conservation and
management objectives and to be able to report to the Committee.
Such a systematic monitoring and reporting will not only improve
site management, but is also likely to facilitate decision-making
by the Committee, and to enhance World Heritage policies and

     In order to implement such a monitoring programme, the
World Heritage Centre will have to cooperate closely with
appropriate institutions, but it will also have to have adequate
human, technical and financial resources of its own. The
creation of reliable baseline information, including a high-
quality data base on World Heritage sites is in this sense of
utmost importance.


     The Centre continued to work with the States Parties and the
Advisory Bodies on the implementation of international assistance
in the form of emergency assistance, technical assistance and
training. During this past year the Committee, upon request from
the States Parties, provided international assistance amounting
to US$ 977,095, of which some US$ 70,780 were spent for
preparatory assistance, US$ 129,500 for emergency assistance, US$
245,565 for training activities, US$ 376,350 for technical
cooperation and US$ 155,000 for promotional activities. A more
detailed report on this is in the working documents.

     Training courses were carried out in cooperation with the
School of African Wildlife Management (Mweka), Tanzania; the
School for Training Wildlife Specialists (Garoua) Cameroon; the
programme at CATIE, Costa Rica and the University of Montpellier.
A training workshop was held at Mt. Huangshan (China) from 10
October to 5 November of this year, which brought together
natural World Heritage site managers from five Chinese World
Heritage sites and protected area managers. Other training
courses were held in Saudi Arabia, France and Mali. Generally
speaking, one can say that our training programme has been
reasonable and consistent. On the basis of the above, the
Secretariat suggests that further exchange be promoted between
site managers in different regions of the world to further the
dialogue and enhance future cooperation between World Heritage

     I should also like to point out that technical assistance
continues to provide catalytic funds for critical sites. As
afore-mentioned, an amount of US$ 129,500 was spent this year on
emergency assistance for four cultural and two natural sites. A
proposal for the revision of the Operational Guidelines was
prepared by Prof. Patrick Boylan in order to improve emergency
action and disaster preparedness. Moreover, at the recently held
27th session of UNESCO' s General Conference, the majority of the
delegates underlined the need to create a flexible structure for
emergency action that would permit rapid and effective
intervention and preliminary safeguarding assistance in the event
of natural or man-made disasters.

     This being said, I should nonetheless wish to add, that
adequate links between our monitoring programmes and the
assistance programmes are yet to be established. By linking these
two our performance should improve considerably.

     For several years now, the Committee has been stressing the
importance of preparing a global study on the World Heritage List
and thematic studies of the different types of cultural
properties which could be proposed for inscription, including
those that are poorly represented or, in some cases, not
represented at all. The study, it was stipulated, should be both
retrospective and forward-looking. With this in mind, as you
know, the Committee decided last year to establish a working
group composed of experts from France, Germany, Greece, Italy,
Mexico, Poland, Tunisia, the United States of America and other
interested States Parties, which was requested to prepare a


report, jointly with ICOMOS, ICCROM and the World Heritage
Centre, that was to be submitted to the Bureau at its seventeenth
session, last June. In July 1993, ICOMOS organized in Colombo,
(Sri Lanka) a working group of six experts whose task it was to
prepare a methodological framework, the results of which are to
be presented at this session. It should be said, however, that
the expert consultations organized by the Secretariat show that
there is as yet no conceptual or methodological concensus in the
scientific community on this matter.

     In addition to the above, ICOMOS carried out two parallel
thematic studies, one on the industrial heritage and the other
on twentieth century architecture. A preliminary report
concerning these will be presented to the Committee at this
session. Taking all this into account, the Committee may wish to
ask the Secretariat to organize in 1994, jointly with ICOMOS and
ICCROM, an expert meeting to discuss the various approaches in
order to define a possible common methodological approach.

Promotional activities carried out in the past twelve months
focused on consolidating the progress made during the celebration
of the 20th anniversary in 1992, and on preparing a more
comprehensive information-promotion-education and marketing
strategy to be implemented as of 1994. A report of past actions
and an outline of future activities are given in document 002/6.
Quite briefly, may I just point out that in addition to the
success we have had with the Newsletter (mentioned already at the
beginning of my presentation), we have been cooperating on
several promising audiovisual projects, notably the Independent
Image series, and a number of special events, particularly the
information campaign in Denmark and the World Heritage awareness
building activities of the Federation of UNESCO Clubs of Japan.

     Most recently, the expert seminar on tourism management in
natural and mixed World Heritage sites, organized from 22 to 26
November in Dakar, Senegal, jointly with UNEP and the WTO, proved
to be a successful undertaking.

     As regards future activities in promotion and education we
attach particular importance to developing a top quality data-
base on the Convention's structure and functioning, to be
achieved through systematic monitoring and in cooperation with
our Advisory Bodies and other concerned institutions. Likewise,
support to on-site promotional activities will be a priority,
with particular stress on strengthening local, national and
regional potential. Lastly, as requested by the Committee,
special attention will be given to developing appropriate
educational materials to be used in schools and extra-curricula
activities for World Heritage awareness-building among children
and young people. Two States Parties, namely Norway and the
United States, have already taken the initiative of preparing and
testing pedagogic materials for World Heritage awareness-building
in some of their highschools, and we look forward to learning
from their experience in the coming year. Moreover, the Centre
proposes to organize, jointly with UNESCO' s Associated Schools
Project, the UNESCO Clubs, the Norwegian Commission for UNESCO


and other partners, a Young People's World Heritage Forum, which
would take place in Bergen, Norway, in June 1995, within the
framework of the Second General Assembly of the World Heritage
Cities. This event could also be considered as a contribution to
the fiftieth anniversary of both the United Nations and UNESCO,
and the celebration of 1995 as the International Year of
Tolerance. An explanation of this proposal will be made available
to you in written form during the session.

Organization of World Heritage Cities

     From 6 to 8 September 1993, Fez, Morocco, was the scat of
a major event for all the partners involved in safeguarding world
heritage: the Constitutional General Assembly of the Organization
of World Heritage Cities. The meeting was held under the
auspices of His Majesty King Hassan II, and was generously hosted
by the Government of Morocco, the regional authorities and the
City of Fez. Five hundred participants attended the opening
session of the meeting which included delegates from 56 cities
inscribed on the World Heritage List, 34 of which were
represented by their mayor or the president of the municipal
council, a large number of municipal technical advisers and
representatives of UNDP, the World Bank, ICOMOS, the Aga Khan
Trust for Culture, the African Development Bank, Habitat, etc.
The meeting was preceded by an international coloquium on the
financing of activities to promote World Heritage Cities.

     This important initiative provided the platform to regroup
under the umbrella of one specialized NGO, the persons
responsible for these cities which are linked by common
characteristics and problems, in order to share available
information and experience thereby increasing the efficiency of
their management and the better conservation of their heritage.
The Director-General of UNESCO, in his declaration, underlined
the importance of increasing public awareness in favour of the
heritage! and emphasized that the cities and their Organization
would constitute a privileged framework. The objectives of this
new NGO, as well as further information on the Fez meeting, are
presented in The World Heritage Newsletter, Nos. 2 and 3. In
June 1995, the city of Bergen (Norway) will host the Second
General Assembly of this new and important partner to the


     At its sixteenth session, the World Heritage Committee
adopted several important decisions and recommendations
concerning the budget. They were examined in detail by the World
Heritage Centre and the UNESCO Comptroller as well as by the
representatives of the advisory bodies.

     The budgetary situation of the Fund has improved and
resources for 1994 will be more than in previous years. It is
therefore recommended that the Committee establish a budget of
US$2,860,000 for 1994, as proposed in the financial documents.
However, it is necessary that the States Parties should, where


appropriate, settle their outstanding dues as, for the period
1981-1993, the amount of outstanding obligatory contributions is
1,134 million US dollars, that is to say about half the annual
budget approved for 1993. In this respect, it would be advisable
for the Committee to strongly insist that States Parties pay
their outstanding financial obligations with regard to the Fund
without further delays.

     Furthermore, in conformity with the Financial Rules of the
Fund, Art. 5.1, it is proposed that a Reserve Fund be created "to
meet requests for assistance resulting from natural calamities
or catastrophes". The Committee could request the Director-
General to allocate to this Fund the sum of US$1 million from the
World Heritage Fund, (Art. 5.1 of the Financial Rules).

     It is also proposed to the Committee not to limit the budget
for 1994 to a given amount, and to approve a provisional budget
for 1995. In this way, consideration may be given to the future
fund requirements: after consultations with the advisory bodies
the Centre therefore proposes that the Committee should from now
on approve a two-year budget. This will improve the continuity
of efforts and provide a more solid basis for programme planning
and availability of funds.

     Efforts will also be made to obtain multilateral assistance,
for example for natural properties with GEF, which is holding a
meeting in Cartagena at this very moment. Particular thanks are
extended to the States Parties who specially contributed to the
efforts for the safeguarding of heritage, as in the case of

The UNESCO World Heritage Centre (WHC)

     As you are aware, the World Heritage Centre was created by
the Director-General of UNESCO eighteen months ago. Its
principal missions are:

-    the preparation of statutory meetings of the
     Convention and the implementation of their

-    the promotion of the Convention in States
     Parties throughout the world;

-    the establishment of a permanent dialogue
     with States Parties concerning conservation;

-    the organization and development of
     systematic monitoring of the state of
     conservation of properties;

-    the profitable use of the technical
     competence of the Sectors of UNESCO and the
     implementation of technical cooperation in
     close cooperation with them;


-    encouragement of intellectual cooperation,
     especially by means of global thematic
     studies, with all partners concerned.

     The need for cooperation and the involvement of all the
Sectors within UNESCO has been symbolized and facilitated by the
establishment of the Steering Committee of the World Heritage
Centre, which is presided over by the Director-General himself.

     This desire for concertation is also reflected by numerous
consultation meetings with the Sectors over the past months as
well as with the advisory bodies, and also meetings concerning
other Conventions such as the Hague Convention and the
Biodiversity Convention.

     The situation of the World Heritage Centre with regard to
personnel is, unfortunately very critical, to implement all these
tasks. Happily, the Centre has been assisted in its tasks by
three professionals seconded from States Parties, and in this
respect I wish to thank Canada, Germany, Italy and the United
States of America for their generous support. But two of these
professionals will be leaving in a few weeks. The Centre
therefore invites States Parties to continue to second to the
Centre high-level professional staff, and, even though UNESCO
is assisting as best it can, it is still necessary, even more
than before, that the Committee continues to support the Centre
with temporary assistance, indispensable in acquiring qualified
services necessary to carry out the Centre 's action.

Future perspectives

     1994 and 1995 will be decisive years for the advancement of
the Convention in several domains: the promotion of the
Convention in States Parties, by giving it a decentralized form;
the perfection and diffusion throughout the world of educational
material adapted to public awareness activities; and also the
setting-up of "automonitoring" by States Parties and site
managers allowing them to establish a kind of preventive

     The "Operational Guidelines" still require revision, in
particular to create emergency assistance procedures to provide
heritage assistance in cases of armed conflict or natural
catastrophes, the development of systematic monitoring, ensure
the conservation of natural landscapes of universal value,
provide world heritage conservation with the necessary
institutional framework thus permitting, and at the same time
increasing the number of partners, to further augment the scope
of international solidarity. This solidarity should apply more
particularly to Eastern and Central European countries which are
in a transitional period.

     It appears to me that our ultimate objective should not only
be to increase the centralized facilities of the Centre, but also
to permit it to set-up throughout the world as many "little
centres" as there are World Heritage properties: it is only

*[ANNEX IV/10]

through such a universal effort and in the field that the values
of the Convention can be widely diffused, which seems more than
ever necessary at this time when, added to the "ordinary"
degradations which heritage undergoes, war, throughout the world,
in destroying it, is also destroying humankind's culture.


                                             ANNEX V

                     WORLD HERITAGE COMMITTEE
                       DECLARATION ON BOSNIA

     The World Heritage Committee, representing the 136 States
Parties to the Convention concerning the protection of the world
cultural and natural heritage, strongly support. the appeals of
the Director-General and the General Conference of UNESCO to halt
all destruction of the heritage of Bosnia Hersegovina and to allow
the international community to participate in the restoration work
which is absolutely necessary.

     The Committee vigorously condemns such destruction, like those
which recently affected Mostar - in flagrant contradiction with
international law - and urges the Director-General of UNESCO to
send, as soon as the situation allows, the mission of experts
requested by the General Conference in order to evaluate the damage
and to study the possibility of providing emergency assistance.