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World Heritage Convention

Decision 43 COM 7A.10
Salonga National Park (Democratic Republic of the Congo) (N 280)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined document WHC/19/43.COM/7A.Add,
  2. Recalling Decision 42 COM 7A.50, adopted at its 42nd session (Manama, 2018),
  3. Congratulates the State Party for the efforts undertaken with its partners in the implementation of the corrective measures and improvement in the management efficiency of the property, and encourages the State Party to reinforce its cooperation efforts with its partners;
  4. Launches an appeal to donors to continue their financial support in the implementation of the corrective measures and in security for the management of the property;
  5. Favourably welcomes the measures undertaken for the local communities and requests the State Party to continue its efforts for the autonomization of the local communities and the continuation of the community ownership process of the community forests in the buffer zone of the Park and the corridor between the two blocks of the Park;
  6. Reiterates its request to the State Party to ensure that the resettlement procedure outside of the Park of the Yaelima communities is voluntary and in accordance with the policies of the Convention and the relevant international standards, including the principles of free, prior and informed consent (CPLCC), fair compensation, access to social advantages and the preservation of cultural rights;
  7. Regrets that the report provided no information on the petroleum project, expresses its very keen concern as regards the granting of petroleum licenses within the property, and urges the State Party to cancel the current petroleum concessions and not to authorize the granting of new concessions in the property and its periphery that could have negative and irreversible effects on its Outstanding Universal Value (OUV);
  8. Reiterates its established position concerning the gas and petroleum exploitation and/or exploration being incompatible with World Heritage status, policy supported by the commitments undertaken by the leaders of the industry, such as Shell and Total, not to engage in such activities in World Heritage properties;
  9. Recalls that modifications concerning the boundaries of World Heritage properties in respect of extractive industries must be carried out in conformity with the procedure applicable to important boundary modifications, detailed in Paragraph 165 of the Operational Guidelines, in view of the potential impact of such projects on the OUV, and also recalls that all proposals for the modification of the boundaries of World Heritage properties must be based on the strengthening of its OUV and must not be proposed with a view to facilitating extractive activities;
  10. Takes note of the positive results of the biological inventories and the setting up of an integrated ecological monitoring plan, and also requests the State Party to submit the results of the biological inventories to the World Heritage Centre for review by IUCN as soon as they are available, as well as the Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger (DSOCR), with appropriate indicators based on the data resulting from these inventories;
  11. Also reiterates its request to, the State Party to invite a joint World Heritage Centre/IUCN reactive monitoring mission, in compliance with Decision 42 COM 7A.50, to assess the state of conservation of the property, update the corrective measures and establish a timetable for their implementation;
  12. 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;
  13. Decides to continue the application of the Reinforced Monitoring Mechanism for the property;
  14. Also decides to retain Salonga National Park (Democratic Republic of the Congo) on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
Decision Code
43 COM 7A.10
Properties 1
State of conservation reports
2019 Salonga National Park
Decisions adopted during the 43rd session of the World Heritage Committee (Baku, 2019)
Context of Decision