Theme: Working methods and toolsclose
The Committee elected by acclamation Mr. Firouz Bagherzadeh (Iran) as its Chairman.
A member of the Committee proposed that Rule 12 of the Provisional Rules of Procedure should be amended to provide for the election of four Vice-Chairmen. This proposal was supported by two members and adopted by the Committee. The Committee then proceeded to elect by acclamation the representatives of the Arab Republic of Egypt, France, Nigeria and Poland, as Vice-Chairmen, and Peter H. Bennett (Canada) as Rapporteur.
The Chairman invited the members of the Committee to examine the Provisional Agenda prepared by the Secretariat. The representative of the Director-General proposed that an item on "other matters" be added to the Agenda; under this item would be considered the offer of collaboration from the International Organization for the Protection of Works of Art (document CC-77/CONF.OO1/5) and the proposed donation of Professor Badawy (document CC-77/CONF.OO1/7). He also suggested that the methods of work of the Committee should not be discussed separately but rather in conjunction with items 7 and ...
In reply to a suggestion that the Rules of Procedure should be examined by a working group which would report back to the Committee at a later plenary meeting, the Legal Adviser stated that, in the absence of a text formally approved by the Committee, the Provisional Rules of Procedure would prevail and he therefore proposed that they be examined at an early plenary meeting; this would not prevent the Committee from amending the Rules of procedure at a later stage, if necessary. He added that the Rules of Procedure would probably only assume their final form after two or three sessions of ...
Several amendments were proposed to bring greater clarity to the text or to reflect more closely the terms of the Convention. The Rules relating to the election of officers and to the voting procedures gave rise to some comment.
With respect to the eligibility for re-election of members of the Bureau, participants considered that, although rotation in the membership of the Bureau was necessary, continuity in the work of the Committee was of paramount importance. Various proposals followed, some providing for re-election of all officers and others for re-election of the Vice-Chairmen and the Rapporteur only. A further proposal which sought to limit the eligibility of all officers for immediate re-election to a second term of office was finally accepted.
An explanation was requested on the different weightings required for a majority vote under the terms of paragraphs 2 and 3 of Rule 28. The Legal Adviser referred members to paragraph 8 of Article 13 of the Convention·which stipulated that "Decisions of the Committee shall be taken by a majority of two-thirds of its members present and voting". This provision was included in an Article of the Convention dealing with substantive questions and not with procedural matters. It was therefore considered that a two-thirds majority should be required on substantive questions. However, ...
Participants requested that two points raised in connection with the Rules of Procedure be noted in the summary record. The first related to the meetings of the Committee which, in the opinion of one member, should be given wide publicity. The second concerned the suspension of the Rules of Procedure which, as confirmed by the Legal Adviser, could be initiated by any State member of the Committee.
A corrigendum setting cut the modifications made by the Committee, as well as an amendment proposed by the representative of the Director-General to Rule 8.2, was examined at the last meeting of the Committee which then proceeded to adopt unanimously the revised text of its Rules of Procedure. (Annex II)
Hope was expressed that sufficient information would be provided to States to enable them to select properties that were truly eligible for inclusion in the List and that the criteria adopted would assist States in restricting their choice of properties nominated. In this connection, one proposal put forward sought to impose on States a limit in the number of properties that they might submit in the first instance but, on reflection this was not considered advisable. It was, however, decided that States would be advised to limit the number of nominations submitted at a given time, on the ...
Several members considered that an independent assessment by experts of the nominations submitted would be essential and it was proposed that the nominations should be transmitted, for comments and evaluation, to the Rome Centre, ICOMOS or IUCN, as appropriate.
One member considered that States not Parties to the Convention should be able to have properties nominated by a State Party for inclusion in the List. Other participants inquired about the possibility of nominating properties not situated in national territories, such as international sites, for instance the United Nations building in New York, or regions such as Antarctica. However, it was pointed out that the Convention was very explicit in this respect, Article II referring to the submission by each State Party of inventories of properties situated in its territory.
The Committee then proceeded to examine the working document paragraph by paragraph and to put forward their comments which would be taken into account by the drafting committee in formulating the decisions taken by the Committee.
Several participants felt that the fundamental notion of the Committee's complete independence in evaluating nominations of States Parties should be more emphatically underlined. Others foresaw that certain properties would be re-evaluated in the light of new discoveries which may lead to the deletion of properties from the List. The "loss of integrity" referred to as a reason for the deletion of property from the List did not appear pertinent in the case of cultural property; for example, monuments in ruins, obviously having lost their integrity, could be eligible for inscription.
It was proposed by several participants that, in the final text of the criteria, no examples should be cited, in order not to prejudice the decisions of the Committee. There was general agreement on this point.
The very tight calendar proposed was discussed in some detail, with many participants referring once more to the difficulties their own governments would have to face in preparing in time their nominations. The question of limiting the number of nominations to be submitted by States was again raised, and whereas the decision previously taken in plenary not to impose any limit was maintained, it was decided that States would be requested to indicate an order of priority among the nominations submitted. States would, at the same time, be reminded that the process of submitting nominations ...
The exact role to be played by the Rome Centre, ICOMOS and IUCN gave rise to some discussion, one member proposing that all nominations should be transmitted automatically by the Secretariat for comments and evaluation to the competent organization. The representative of the Director-General agreed that the organizations had an extremely important role to play in reviewing the dossiers submitted by States Parties, and in particular in putting them into order but he feared that the addition of another step in the already tight calendar might entail delays. It was therefore decided that the ...
In order to present the Committee at its second session with a set of nominations that would be balanced by category and by geographical and cultural region, it was decided that the Bureau, meeting in June 1978, would review all the nominations received and decide which would be forwarded to the Committee. The following calendar would thus be followed: November 1977: dispatch to States Parties of Director-General's letter, together with printed nomination form; 1 April 1978: receipt of nominations from States Parties; April/May 1978: dossiers will be received and completed, if ...
With respect to the granting of international assistance, it was suggested that, in view of the limited funds available, a fixed maximum sum should be made available for each project. This would be difficult, responded another participant, since each case would have to be considered separately in the light of resources available under the Fund and arrangements for complementary financing. Another proposed that such decisions should be taken on the basis of an annual budget submitted to the Committee at each session.
On the basis of resources available in the World Heritage Fund, the Secretariat proposed in document CC-77/CONF.001/6, a budget covering (i) the preparation of model nomination files, (ii) technical co-operation to States Parties in preparing their nominations and requests for assistance, and (iii) emergency assistance required before the next session of the Committee.