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World Heritage Convention

Decision 44 COM 7B.98
Ha Long Bay (Viet Nam) (N 672bis)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/21/44.COM/7B,
  2. Recalling Decision 38 COM 7B.72, adopted at its 38th session (Doha, 2014),
  3. Commends the State Party for addressing many of the previously identified conservation issues and the 2018 IUCN Advisory mission, and welcomes the overall progress in reinforcing the management and conservation framework, educational activities and waste management;
  4. Requests the State Party to continue implementing all the recommendations of the 2018 mission, taking into account the outcomes of the management effectiveness review, in particular:
    1. The recommendations concerning visitor management, including conducting a carrying capacity study,
    2. The submission of details on the measures implemented for wastewater and solid waste management, including results of the water quality assessment in and around the property, details of the existing industries, including coal and cement industries operating within the property, its buffer zone and within the biophysical catchment area;
  5. Also requests the State Party to finalize and implement the revised Management Plan as an integrated management tool, with particular attention given to:
    1. Ensuring the plan is based on a catchment-wide approach for the holistic protection of the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) of the property,
    2. Including tourism management measures based on the carrying capacity study to avoid overcrowding inside and in the vicinity of the property, and thus address impacts of increasing tourism pressures on the OUV of the property,
    3. Providing a clear governance framework for development projects, especially for multi-sectoral developments that include infrastructure, maritime operations, urban activities and resource extraction,
    4. Ensuring that any social measures having socio-economic impacts, such as relocation projects, are voluntary and in line with the 2015 Policy Document on the integration of a Sustainable Development perspective into the processes of the World Heritage Convention, and that they socio-cultural rights of local communities are preserved;
  6. Encourages the State Party to seek advice from the World Heritage Tourism Programme and prepare a Sustainable Tourism and Development Strategy for the property, for review by the World Heritage Centre and IUCN;
  7. Further requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, for review by IUCN, a map with a clear indication of the current boundaries of the property and its buffer zone, including details on the use and management regime within the buffer zone, in line with paragraph 164 of Operational Guidelines;
  8. Finally requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 December 2022, an updated report on the state of conservation of the property and the implementation of the above, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 46th session.
Decision Code
44 COM 7B.98
States Parties 1
State of conservation reports
2021 Ha Long Bay - Cat Ba Archipelago
Decisions adopted at the 44th extended session of the World Heritage Committee
Context of Decision