State of Conservation (SOC)
Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger
UNESCO Extra-Budgetary Funds
International Assistance granted to the property
Total Amount Ap proved:113,595USD
|1998||Hydrological and topographical studies for the Moats of Angkor ...||28,595 USD|
|1994||Consolidation of the Pre Rupt monument in Angkor||50,000 USD|
|1993||Financial contribution for the installation of an alarm system at ...||20,000 USD|
|1992||Mission to prepare a Tentative List and a nomination dossier for ...||15,000 USD|
September 1997: legal expert mission
Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
- Inadequate protective legislation;
- Inadequately staffed national protection agency;
- No permanent boundaries established and defined buffer zones;
- Need for monitoring and coordination of the international conservation effort
Current conservation issues
International Assistance : Preparatory assistance : 1992 US$ 15,000 : Preparation of the Tentative List and nomination file for Angkor. Emergency assistance : 1993 US$ 20,000 : Installation of an alarm system at Angkor. 1994 US$ 50,000 : Consolidation of the Pre Rup Temple. 1998 US$ 28,595 : Hydrogeological studies on the trenches of Angkor financed in the framework of emergency assistance financed by the World heritage Bureau in June 1998, were delayed due to a change of direction of APSARA (Authority for the Protection of the Site and Development of the Region of Angkor). These studies are now the responsibility of the APSARA Authority. Training assistance : 1992 US$ 10,000 : Training seminar.
Summary of previous deliberations :
Twenty-second session of the Committee (paragraph number VII.16) Twenty-third session of the Bureau (paragraph number IV.12) See also: Information Document WHC-99/CONF.204/INF.13
New information: The plenary session of the International Co-ordination Committee for the Safeguarding and Development of the Historic Area of Angkor (ICC), for which UNESCO provides the Secretariat, met on 22 June 1999. The main outcome and decisions of the CIC are set out hereunder :
1. Administrative reorganization of the APSARA
-By royal edicts of 22 January 1999, the APSARA Authority now has the status of a public administration headed by a President Director-General in the person of H.E. Vann Molyvann and two deputy directors-general. In accordance with its role as responsible for the development and management of Siem Reap/Angkor, ASPARA will decide upon the specifications for a large number of projects.
-The Royal Government of Cambodia informed the CIC of its decision to grant to a private company the collection of entry fees to Angkor Park for a five-year period, and to allocate in 1999 a budget of US$ 800,000 to the Authority for the Protection of the Site and Developemnt of the Region of Angkor (ASPARA). This budget will be increased by 15% each year.
- ASPARA now comprises five departments : central administration, accounts agency and three technical departments : the Directorate for Culture and Monuments, the Directorate for Tourist Development of Angkor and the Directorate for Urban Development. This administrative restructuration involves the recruitment of about ten qualified persons, including archaeologists and architects (three for Phnom Penh and seven for Siem Reap).
2. Action plan and the implementation of activities of ASPARA
-In the framework of the programme of the Directorate for Culture and Monuments, a specific management project for Angkor Wat is being implemented as a pilot project since 1 July 1999 with the goal of establishing the conservation of Angkor Wat. This project comprises an increased protection of the Temple, in a first stage, through the recruitment of eighteen guards, information and the involvement of local populations and a pedagogical action in the form of posters and publications for Khmers and foreign visitors. The ASPARA participates technically and financially in the project for the restoration of the access road west of Angkor Wat and for the entrance portal of the central part that is on the verge of collapse.
In partnership with the University of Sophia and the Nara Institute (Japan), the APSARA continues the archaeological excavations of the ancient ovens at the village of Tani, the methodology and scientific results of which are innovative at Angkor. Furthermore, the ASPARA is working on a project for the enhancement of the little Temple of Prasat Top and is associated with a prehistory research project at the University of Otago (New Zealand) on the so-called “round” villages of the Nourth-west region of Angkor Park. The ASPARA is funding project activities for the maintenance of the roads and the areas surrounding the monuments of Angkor Park, launched by the ILO in 1991;
-For urban and tourist development, the ASPARA has presented its activities for the promotion of the site of Angkor and its action plan for the development of the first part (60 ha) of the hotel city, aimed at attracting several high class hotels, to the CIC.
3. Training: The ASPARA and the CIC have decided to develop a national training strategy in the field of heritage conservation, and to launch, in October 1999, thanks to funding by the Japanese Government and in close cooperation with ICCROM and SPAFA, the first technical training field project for future Cambodian heritage specialists. A preparatory technical meeting was organized in Bangkom from 31 August to 2 September 1999.
4. Illicit traffic: The CIC was informed that the dossier requesting the restriction of the importation into the United States of America of Cambodian cultural heritage, prepared at the request of the Cambodian authorities by the Division of Cultural Heritage of UNESCO, was submitted to the American authorities in May 1999. With regard to the protection of the site of Angkor, ASPARA is providing financial support to the special Commissariat of Heritage Police. The CIC has also taken note of the creation by the Cambodian authorities of an Interministerial Committee composed of the ASPARA and the Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts, which is responsible for taking the necessary measures to ensure the protection of the Banteay Chmar Temple, subject of a vast looting operation in November 1998. In this framework, the restitution to the Royal Government of Cambodia of objects that were seized by the Thai authorities was evoked with those authorities. The creation of a Police Unit with the provincial authorities is also foreseen to guard the temple and to work on the documentation of the site of Banteay Chmar, which is already listed on the Tentative List for eventual inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
5. International Centre for Scientific and Technical Documentation on Angkor (CID):
The CIC was informed of the opening of the CID, and the intention that it becomes the reference and documentation centre and the memory of the international safeguarding and development programme for Angkor. The CIC invited all the teams to provide a copy of their documentation of the work site to this Centre.
6. New project proposals: The meeting of the CIC also provided an opportunity
to examine several proposals for new projects, that bear witness to the vitality of the international safeguarding programme of the site of Angkor which, for example, includes the restoration project of Chau Say Tevoda by the Chinese Government, the preparation of a risk preparedness map for which funding is being seeked, the strong participation of the population in Angkor Park. Amonst the projects accepted is the renewal for six years of projects carried out by the Japanese Team for Safeguarding Angkor (JSA). A rehabilitation project for the Route Nationale 6, is being constructed thanks to joint funding from The World Bank and the Asia Development Bank, and includes the safeguarding of ten historic bridges.
The next Technical Committee of the CIC will be held on 17 and 18 December 1999, at Siem Reap. The members of the ad hoc group of experts of the CIC will go on mission to Angkor from 12 to 19 December to examine the ongoing projects, and to participate in the meeting of the Technical Committee as well as the Fourth Symposium on Bayon.
The Fourth Symposium on the Safeguarding of Bayon, organized by the Japanese JSA team with UNESCO support, will be held on the 13 and 14 December 1999 in Siem Reap.
A copy in English and French of the annual activity reports prepared by the International Co-ordination Committee for the Safeguard and Development of the Historic Site of Angkor (CIC) have been transmitted to the World Heritage Committee.
Analysis and Conclusion
Link to the decision
X.15 Angkor (Cambodia)
The Secretariat reported on the results of the International Coordination Committee for the Safeguarding and Development of the Historic Area of Angkor (ICC) which convened its plenary session in June 1999. The Committee's attention was drawn to the decision taken by the Royal Government of Cambodia to grant to a private company the collection of entry fees to Angkor Park for a five-year period, and the allocation in 1999 of US$ 800,000 by this company to the Authority for the Protection of the Site and Development of the Region of Angkor (ASPARA) for conservation activities. The Committee noted the report submitted by the State Party on the reorganization of APSARA and that some one hundred projects are being implemented by more than a dozen countries and agencies, including large-scale infrastructural projects such as road and bridge constructions, airport extension and public utilities upgrading of the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and other bilateral and multilateral financial and development co-operation agencies, as well as privately-funded projects, notably for the construction of tourism facilities. To ensure that such works, necessary for the socioeconomic welfare of the population, do not undermine the World Heritage value of the site, the Committee requested the strengthening of international co-ordination efforts by APSARA and the ICC to review all public and private works affecting the site in addition to the monumental conservation projects. Recalling paragraph 56 of the Operational Guidelines for the Implementation of the World heritage Convention, the State Party was invited to inform the Committee through the Secretariat, of major restorations or new constructions which they intend to undertake or to authorize which may affect the World Heritage values of the site, before the drafting of basic documents of the specific projects and before granting authorization.
As a management tool to record and monitor the various development works, the updating of the Geographical Information System (GIS) of Angkor developed in 1993, and to make this consolidated data available to all concerned parties was proposed.
Concerning the conservation projects, the Committee, while expressing appreciation for the high quality of the standards applied in the on-going projects, stressed the necessity to ensure the transfer of knowledge and skills to the national and local experts through training. In this regard, ICCROM, recognized by the Committee as the principal partner for training in cultural heritage conservation, reiterated its readiness to evaluate the training aspects of the on-going projects and to improve, as appropriate, the effectiveness of such endeavours. The Committee furthermore expressed its deep concern over the alarming reports on the continued looting and illicit traffic of cultural properties in Angkor and other cultural sites on the Tentative list of Cambodia. The Committee urged the State Party to take further action to enhance the protection of the site against looting and the national frontiers against illicit export of cultural properties and requested the signatories of the 1970 Convention to take all measures possible to prevent the importation and sales of Khmer cultural objects of uncertain provenance.
The Observer of Indonesia informed the Committee of his Government's assistance to the State Party to enhance the technical capacity of the conservation laboratories in Angkor through training activities.
The Observer of Japan, expressing his Government's wish to continue to co-chair the ICC alongside the Government of France, informed the Committee of the commitment of the Japanese Government to continue providing financial assistance to Angkor.
The Observer of the United States of America informing the Committee of its recent accession to the 1970 Convention, stated its commitment to strengthen measures restricting the importation into the United States of Cambodian cultural heritage.
The Committee adopted the following decision:
The Committee decided to retain this property on the List of World Heritage in Danger. The Committee, after having examined the report on the state of conservation of the site, congratulated the Royal Government of Cambodia for the significant progress made in the funding and reorganization of the Authority for the Protection of the Site and Development of the Region of Angkor (ASPARA). The Committee encouraged the ASPARA to strengthen its action in the field of training so as to ensure control over the ongoing restoration and maintenance of the monuments and the protection of the site against looting and illicit traffic of cultural objects. It invited ASPARA and the ICC to monitor closely the rapid development of the activities and collections of the International Centre for Scientific and Technical Documentation for Angkor, which should in due course house all the documentation produced by the safeguarding and development projects of the site. The Committee requested the State Party to prepare an updated state of conservation report with support of the UNESCO Office in Phnom Penh and the Division of Cultural Heritage of UNESCO of the actions being undertaken in addressing the concerns expressed above. The Committee invited the Chairperson of the Committee to write to the Co-Chairpersons of the ICC requesting them to assist the State Party in the preparation of this report. This report should include information concerning the on-going and planned major public and private works in the region of Angkor, as well as the status of measures being undertaken at the national and local levels to control looting and illicit traffic of cultural properties from Angkor and other sites on the Tentative List of Cambodia. The Committee requested that this report be provided to the Secretariat by 15 April 2000 for examination by the Committee at its twenty-fourth session.
The Committee may wish to retain this property on the List of World Heritage in Danger. The Committee, after having examined the report on the state of conservation of the site, congratulated the Royal Government of Cambodia for the significant progress made in the funding and reorganization of the Authority for the Protection of the Site and Development of the Region of Angkor (APSARA). The Committee encourages the ASPARA to strengthen its action in the field of training so as to ensure control over the ongoing restoration and maintenance of the monuments and the protection of the site against looting and illicit traffic of cultural objects. It invites ASPARA and the CIC to monitor closely the rapid development of the activities and collections of the International Centre for Scientific and Technical Documentation for Angkor, which should in due course house all the documentation produced by the safeguarding and development projects of the site.
View inscribed site documents, nomination file, reports, decisions, ...
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Detailed List of SOC reports
Urgent problems of conservation
Inscription on the Danger ListYear: 1992 -2004
Threats to the Site:
Given the unique situation in Cambodia, which, in accordance with the Paris Accords, has been placed under the temporary administration of the United Nations since July 1991, and in order to deal with the urgent problems of conservation quickly and effectively, the Committee has inscribed the site of Angkor on the List of World Heritage in Danger, and has requested, on the recommendation of ICOMOS, that the authorities concerned take the necessary steps to meet the following conditions:
a) enact adequate protective legislation;
b) establish an adequately staffed national protection agency;
c) establish permanent boundaries based on the UNDP project;
d) define meaningful buffer zones;
e) establish monitoring and coordination of the international conservation effort.
The threats indicated are listed in alphabetical order; their order does not constitute a classification according to the importance of their impact on the property.
Furthermore, they are presented irrespective of the type of threat faced by the property, i.e. with specific and proven imminent danger (“ascertained danger”) or with threats which could have deleterious effects on the property’s Outstanding Universal Value (“potential danger”).