Year of inscription on the World Heritage List 2012
Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger N/A
Previous Committee Decisions see page http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/1380/documents/
Requests approved: 0
Total amount approved: USD 0
For details, see page http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/1380/assistance/
UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds
Total amount granted: 250,000 Euros from 2008 to 2013 through the Central African World Heritage Forest Initiative funded by the European Commission
Previous monitoring missions
Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports
Illustrative material see page http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/1380/
Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2014
On 29 January 2014, the three States Parties submitted a joint report on the state of conservation, available at the following address: http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/1380/documents/.
The States Parties informed of the proliferation of firearms resulting from the state of unrest in the Central African Republic (CAR), and increased poaching due to strong international demand for ivory.
The following measures have been undertaken to restore the security of the property:
The report also mentions the granting of two mining exploration concessions in the Congo, and in the CAR a mining exploitation permit (gold and diamonds), all of which infringe on the property and its buffer zone, despite the legislation in force. Artisanal gold exploitation works are also installed in the Cameroon part of the property and steps are underway to remove the people living at these work sites. The report indicates a road construction project between the Congo and the CAR as well as a project for the distribution of optical fibre in the Congo that could have an impact on the property.
Analysis and Conclusions of the World Heritage Centre and IUCN
It is recommended that the World Heritage Committee commend the considerable efforts undertaken by the three States Parties to strengthen security at the frontiers of the Sangha Trinational (STN). These measures have enabled increased surveillance activities, thus avoiding major degradation of the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) of the property following the impacts of the crisis in the CAR. To be noted is the proliferation of firearms resulting from the state of unrest in the CAR and the increase in poaching linked to the strong international demand for ivory. The problem of poaching in Central Africa, notably elephant poaching for ivory by armed gangs, is beyond the capabilities of the services responsible for the protection of the protected areas and requires a concerted regional approach involving the different services of the States. In this respect, the tripartite transboundary anti-poaching cooperation agreement between the CAR, Cameroon and Chad is to be commended, and the adoption by the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) of the emergency anti-poaching plans that demonstrate the political will of the States of the sub-region to address this problem. However, it is of prime importance to accelerate the implementation of these mechanisms and to mobilize technical and financial support from donors.
It is recommended that the World Heritage Committee express its deep concern as regards the granting of mining exploration and exploitation permits partially encroaching upon the property and its buffer zone in the Congo and the CAR, despite the legislation in force forbidding such activities. The limits of these mining permits should be reviewed to eliminate any encroachment of the property, as the Ministry of Mines of Cameroon has done, and the States Parties should submit to the World Heritage Centre environmental impact studies demonstrating that the mining activities outside the property do not impact on its OUV. The existence of artisanal gold exploitation works within the property in Cameroon is also noted, as well as the steps undertaken to close them down.
The Ouesso-Bangui road project and the project to distribute optical fibre around Ouesso could impact on the OUV of the property. Detailed environmental impact studies are needed to identify potential impacts on the OUV, in accordance with IUCN’s advice note on Environmental Assessments for World Heritage.
Decision Adopted: 38COM 7B.87
The World Heritage Committee,