1.         Rice Terraces of the Philippine Cordilleras (Philippines) (C 722)

Year of inscription on the World Heritage List  1995

Criteria  (iii)(iv)(v)

Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger    2001-present

Previous Committee Decisions  see page http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/722/documents/

International Assistance

Requests approved: 0 (from 1994-2001)
Total amount approved: USD 153,200
For details, see page http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/722/assistance/

UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds


Previous monitoring missions

September 2001: joint IUCN / ICOMOS reactive monitoring mission ;  October 2002: World Heritage Centre and the UNESCO Regional Advisor for Culture in the Asia-Pacific Region mission 

Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

Illustrative material  see page http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/722/

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2003


When the Banaue Rice Terraces Task Force (BRTTF), management authority for the Rice Terraces of the Philippines Cordilleras World Heritage property was abolished in March 2002, IUCN expressed concern in its letter to the UNESCO National Commission of the Philippines (UNACOM). IUCN requested clarification on the rationale for BRTTF’s abolition and the government’s intention to establish another management body as its replacement. UNACOM informed IUCN and the Centre that the Provincial Government of Ifugao had established the Ifugao Rice Terraces and Cultural Heritage Office (IRTCHO), supported by the Provincial Government and the National Commission for Culture and Arts (NCCA). The Provincial Government had provided approximately US$40,000 to start the rehabilitation work on the irrigation systems in the Terraces, while NCCA allocated approximately US$ 1 million in support of conservation programmes.

In the state of conservation report dated 14 March 2003, the State Party informed the Centre that IRTCHO is now responsible for the updating and implementation of the Ifugao Rice Terraces Master Plan, and that several projects are under way to halt the erosion of the landscape value, such as the Indigenous Farming System Demonstration Project, Banaue – Batad Road Improvement Project.

At the national level, an Advisory Body, composed of UNACOM, NCCA, National Committee on Marine Sciences (NCMS), UNACOM Culture Committee, and the Office of the Governor, has been formed to oversee the management of the rice terraces.

The World Heritage Centre and the UNESCO Regional Advisor for Culture in the Asia-Pacific Region organized a mission to the site between 12 and 19 October 2002 which resulted in the elaboration of a work plan and timetable for the implementation of the Technical Emergency Assistance (US$75,000) allocated by the Committee at its 25th session. This work plan was approved in February 2003 by the national authorities concerned. The Centre was informed that an Activity-Financing Contract was established with IRTCHO to undertake activities as stipulated in the approved work plan. The First Review and Stakeholders’ Workshop will take place from 21 to 26 July 2003. The meeting will review the accomplishments made against goals set in the 1994 Management Plan and analyze all physical interventions (irrigation, terrace wall repair, replanting of watersheds, etc.) necessary to revive the rice production at the five terrace clusters of the property.


Additional Details:

Natural erosion (landslides) through lack of maintenance 

Analysis and Conclusions of the World Heritage Centre, ICOMOS and ICCROM


Decision Adopted: 27 COM 7A.25

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined the state of conservation of the property;

2. Recommends that the State Party considers ways and means to enable the Ifugao Rice Terraces and Cultural Heritage Office (IRTCHO) to raise and use funds other than the subsidies provided by the National Commission for Culture and Arts (NCCA), and increase stakeholder involvement in its work;

3. Requests UNESCO, the Advisory Bodies and other international partners to support and strengthen the international co-operation activities with the competent national and local authorities by mobilising appropriate international assistance to the maximum extent possible;

4. Requests that the State Party provide a report to the World Heritage Centre by 1 February 2004 on progress made in the implementation of corrective measures recommended by the IUCN/ICOMOS mission of September 2001 for  examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 28th session in 2004;

5. Decides to retain the property on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Decision Adopted: 27 COM 8B.2

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Following examination of state of conservation reports of properties on the List of World Heritage in Danger (WHC-03/27.COM/7A),;

2. Decides to maintain the following properties on the List of World Heritage in Danger: