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Decision : 35 COM 8B.12
Natural Properties - Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park, under the additional criterion (x) (Viet Nam)

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined Documents WHC-11/35.COM/8B and WHC-11/35.COM/INF.8B2,

2. Recalling that the Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park, Viet Nam, is already inscribed on the World Heritage List under criteria (viii);

3. Refers the re-nomination of Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park, Viet Nam, under the additional criterion (x) back to the State Party to allow it to address the integrity, protection and management issues affecting the property, including:

a) The need to considerably strengthen, including through improved interagency cooperation and cooperation with Viet Nam's border police and army, law enforcement in the region to reduce the illegal harvest of, and trade in wildlife, timber and non-timber forest products that is adversely affecting the Outstanding Universal Value of the Park,

b) The need to update the Park's management plan, which expired in 2006, through a participatory process involving all relevant stakeholders, adopt the updated management plan and provide adequate resources for its effective implementation, especially in relation to safeguarding the newly identified values that are being proposed. The updated management plan should ideally cover both the park and the proposed extension of the park. The revised management plan should incorporate a landscape level vision and potential cooperation regionally for the recovery of wide-ranging and significant keystone species;

4. Also recommends the State Party to consider submission of an extension to the property, with the assistance of IUCN and the World Heritage Centre as required, including consideration of the following points:

a) Completion of the ongoing process to extend the park from 85,754 ha to 125,729 ha, in addition to actively pursuing continued discussions with the Government of PDR Lao with a view to the potential nomination of Hin Namno National Biodiversity Conservation Area as part of a transboundary approach,

b) The potential application of a revised nomination to be put forward for criterion (ix), as well as criteria (viii) and (x), in recognition of the potential for an enlarged area to meet these criteria;

5. Also encourages the State Party, Quang Binh Provincial People's Committee, Park management, and all partners of the Park to continue their efforts to strengthen conservation and management of the Park and its buffer zone, in order to ensure that tourism development and the use of natural resources by local communities is environmentally sustainable and benefits equitably shared;

6. Urges the State Party to ensure that Environmental Impact Assessments are undertaken and acted upon, in order to ensure that any infrastructure and tourism developments being considered within the property and in adjacent areas that could be part of a future extension, do not adversely affect the Outstanding Universal Value of the property;

7. Further encourages the State Party, with the support of IUCN, World Heritage Centre and other partners, to seek additional technical and financial assistance for staff training and equipment to strengthen law enforcement, management and monitoring capacity, for adoption of a tailored management effectiveness evaluation framework, and for improved heritage interpretation and conservation at local and landscape scales.

Themes: Inscriptions on the World Heritage List
States Parties: Viet Nam
Year: 2011
Decision Code: 35 COM 8B.12