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World Heritage Convention

Decision 38 COM 7B.92
Lake Malawi National Park (Malawi) (N 289)

The World Heritage Committee

  1. Having examined Document WHC-14/38.COM/7B.Add,
  2. Recalling Decision 37 COM 7B.5, adopted at its 37th session (Phnom Penh, 2013),
  3. Reiterates its concern over oil exploration activities throughout the lake, noting that an accidental spill would pose a potentially severe risk to the integrity of the entire lake ecosystem including the aquatic zone and shoreline of the property
  4. Notes that an Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) for oil exploration in the northern part of the lake is being carried out, and requests the State Party to ensure that this ESIA includes a specific assessment of potential impacts of oil exploration and subsequent exploitation on the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) of the property, in conformity with IUCN’s World Heritage Advice Note on Environmental Assessment;
  5. Urges the State Party to cancel the oil exploitation permit which overlaps with the property and reiterates its position that oil, gas and mineral exploration and exploitation are incompatible with World Heritage status;
  6. Calls on Surestream and RAKGAS, who have been awarded oil exploration concessions on the lake, to make a commitment to not exploit nor explore for oil or gas in World Heritage properties;
  7. Also requests the State Party of Malawi to implement all the recommendations of the 2014 joint UNESCO/IUCN reactive monitoring mission:
    1. Demarcate the boundary of the outer limits of the aquatic zone of the property with floating buoys,
    2. Deploy patrol boats, other equipment and personnel to ensure enforcement of fishing restrictions and other measures aimed at protecting the OUV of the property,
    3. Design and implement an effective monitoring protocol to provide a basis for assessing changes in fish diversity and populations, other fauna, water quality and management parameters that could be used in adapting management interventions for better protection of the property’s OUV,
    4. Closely engage with communities in the village enclaves and in the periphery of the property to develop suitable resource management programmes,
    5. Promote low-impact eco-tourism ventures that comply with appropriate environmental and social impact standards;
  8. Also urges the State Party to revise the 2007-2011 management plan for the property, provide an electronic and three printed copies for review by the World Heritage Centre and IUCN as soon as it is available and to ensure that the revised management plan includes provisions for the implementation of the above-mentioned mission recommendations;
  9. Encourages the States Parties of Malawi, Mozambique and Tanzania to collaborate in identifying important localities for the protection of endemic fish and evolutionary processes with a view to incorporating such areas into an extended trans-national serial property, in cooperation with international conservation non-governmental organizations and scientific experts;
  10. Further requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 December 2015, an updated report, including a 1-page executive summary, on the state of conservation of the property and the implementation of the above, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 40th session in 2016.
Decision Code
38 COM 7B.92
Conservation, Reports
States Parties 1
State of conservation reports
2014 Lake Malawi National Park
Report of the Decisions adopted by the World Heritage Committee at its 38th session (Doha, 2014)
Context of Decision
Other Documents (1)
Report on the Reactive Monitoring Mission to Lake Malawi National Park (Malawi), 30 March - 4 April 2014