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World Heritage Convention

Decision 40 COM 7B.68
Natural and Cultural Heritage of the Ohrid region (the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia) (C/N 99ter)

The World Heritage Committee,
  1. Having examined Document WHC/16/40.COM/7B,
  2. Recalling Decision 38 COM 7B.58, adopted at its 38th session (Doha, 2014),
  3. Welcomes the actions undertaken by the State Party concerning the revision of the project for the Instauration of St. Clement’s University at Plaoshnik to reduce its negative impacts on the property;
  4. Notes with concern that a number of large-scale infrastructure projects have been proposed within the property and that the conclusions of the impact assessments of the proposed Galičica Ski Centre, the A3 road, the Railway corridor VIII and Highway A2 demonstrate that these projects would be likely to cause significant potential impacts on the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) of the property, and considers that these projects appear to represent a potential danger to the property, in line with paragraphs 179 and 180 of the Operational Guidelines;
  5. Requests the State Party, as a matter of urgency, to prepare an overall Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) and Heritage Impact Assessment (HIA) that assess comprehensively the potential cumulative impacts of all proposed infrastructure plans and other major projects on the property’s OUV, with a view to identifying alternative routes and locations for these major projects that do not impact on the OUV, and to submit them to the World Heritage Centre, for review by the Advisory Bodies, before any further work is undertaken;
  6. Also requests the State Party to invite a joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS/IUCN Reactive Monitoring mission to the property in 2016 to assess its state of conservation and to provide technical advice to the State Party with regards to the development of the above-mentioned SEA and HIA;
  7. Also welcomes the participatory approach to the revisions of the Management Plan for the property but strongly encourages the State Party to:
    1. Finalize the Management Plan for the property, and the Integrated Protection Plan for the Old Town Nucleus of Ohrid, and submit an electronic and three printed copies of the revised Management Plan to the World Heritage Centre, for review by the Advisory Bodies, prior to the above-mentioned Reactive Monitoring Mission,
    2. Finalize the detailed urban plans for each of the 19 complexes which are part of the monumental ensemble, in line with the existing regulatory framework, to ensure the enforcement of provisions and the control of activities that might impact the OUV of the property,
    3. Strictly enforce legal and regulatory provisions, and establish, as a matter of urgency, the foreseen Commission to coordinate natural and cultural heritage activities, as a management structure to control development pressures and interventions at the property,
    4. Develop a comprehensive action plan for the lakeshore to provide adequate guidance on the type and extent of potential developments in relation to the attributes of OUV of the property and its setting;
  8. Also encourages the States Parties of Albania and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, with the support of the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies, to continue to cooperate in the framework of the Upstream Process towards the preparation of a transboundary extension of the property to possibly include the Albanian part of Lake Ohrid, in order to strengthen the values and integrity of the property;
  9. Further requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2017, a report on the state of conservation of the property and on the steps taken to implement the above recommendations, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 41st session in 2017, with a view to considering, in the case of confirmation of the ascertained or potential danger to OUV, the possible inscription of the property on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
Decision Code
40 COM 7B.68
Conservation, List of World Heritage in Danger, Reports
Report of the Decisions adopted during the 40th session of the World Heritage Committee (Istanbul/UNESCO, 2016)
Context of Decision