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World Heritage Convention

Decision 43 COM 7A.43
Nan Madol: Ceremonial Centre of Eastern Micronesia (Micronesia, Federated States of) (C 1503)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/19/43.COM/7A,
  2. Recalling Decision 42 COM 7A.3, adopted at its 42nd session (Manama, 2018),
  3. Welcomes the appointment of an interim “Property Manager”, but encourages the State Party to work towards a long-term commitment for this post;
  4. Notes that progress has been made on amendments to draft legislation LB392 and that it is scheduled to be approved in the next legislative session;
  5. Also notes that the 2018 mission advised that tackling the restoration of the property as a whole is impossible and impractical, as the maintenance required would be virtually impossible to achieve; that the mission therefore advocated achievable goals as the first phase of a multi-phase project for the areas where intervention is needed and maintenance is feasible; and that its report sets out initial short and medium term goals;
  6. Further notes that the 2018 mission considered that, prior to defining corrective measures, a much clearer idea is required of how the conservation of the property will move forward with the augmented resources, and notably how the dangers arising from a lack of conservation and ongoing management will be addressed;
  7. Also welcomes the draft Conservation Plan, conceived as a practical Action Plan, which reflects the recommendations of the 2018 mission, strongly encourages the State Party to finalize and adopt the Conservation Plan, and notes furthermore the need for significant international financial support for the realization of conservation objectives, and the need to augment the professional pool of conservation experts available at the property;
  8. Further welcomes the significant progress made with the short-term goals outlined by the 2018 mission, with support from International Assistance, in particular the initial, non-invasive clearing of vegetation overgrowth at two of the principle sites, Nan Dowas and Pahn Kedira; the removal of superficial growth from retaining walls at Pahn Kedira and Paikapw; and limited progress with channel clearance to facilitate visitor access;
  9. Commends the financial support extended by the State Party of the United States of America towards conducting a LiDar (“light detection and ranging”) survey of the property and the islands of Temwen and supporting further work on short- and medium-terms goals;
  10. Recommends that the State Party prepare, as soon as possible, a dedicated capacity-building programme, as recommended by the 2018 mission and the Conservation Plan, to ensure local engagement and share benefits from the funding obtained so far;
  11. Notes moreover that funding has been extended by the State Party of Japan to create a Visitor Centre, and requests the State Party to submit revised plans addressing the recommendations of the ICOMOS Technical Review;
  12. Finally notes that the construction of a Visitor Centre is being planned in advance of the development of a Tourism Strategy; considers that such a strategy is needed urgently to identify which parts of the property can be accessible to visitors, as this is turn will impact the conservation programme, and urges the State Party to draft a Tourism Strategy as soon as possible and submit it to the World Heritage Centre for review by the Advisory Bodies;
  13. Also urges the State Party to ensure progress with the development of the Management plan and to regularly provide the World Heritage Centre with updated information on this work;
  14. Also encourages the State Party, when the Conservation Plan and supportive funding for the initial survey and conservation work are in place, begin to implement the actions outlined in the Conservation Plan and integrate them into large-scale phased recovery programmes, which in turn could facilitate the development of corrective measures and a DSOCR, to be adopted by the Committee;
  15. Also requests the State Party to provide, in accordance with Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines, detailed information on any proposed and on-going projects, in particular those related to infrastructure development, and to include Heritage Impact Assessments (HIAs) carried out according to the ICOMOS Guidance on HIAs for Cultural World Heritage properties, for review by the Advisory Bodies, prior to the approval and/or implementation of any project;
  16. Further requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2020, 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 44th session in 2020;
  17. Decides to retain Nan Madol: Ceremonial Centre of Eastern Micronesia (Micronesia (Federated States of)) on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
Decisions adopted during the 43rd session of the World Heritage Committee (Baku, 2019)
Context of Decision