1.         Vat Phou and Associated Ancient Settlements within the Champasak Cultural Landscape (Lao People's Democratic Republic) (C 481)

Year of inscription on the World Heritage List  2001

Criteria  (iii)(iv)(vi)

Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger  N/A

Previous Committee Decisions  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/481/documents/

International Assistance

Requests approved: 0 (from 1999-1999)
Total amount approved: USD 13,000
For details, see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/481/assistance/

UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds


Previous monitoring missions


Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

Urban Pressure; Tourism Pressure; Lack of management mechanism (including legislation); Lack of presentation and interpretation. 

Illustrative material  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/481/

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2004

The State Party submitted a state of conservation report to the World Heritage Centre, as requested by the World Heritage Committee at its 27th session.


Following decision 27 COM 7B.51, the State Party informed the Secretariat that a consultation meeting with the Ministry of Communications, Transport, Posts and Construction has been organized to decide on the road construction within the World Heritage property. Once the full documentation on the project is received by the Ministry of Information and Culture, a consultation meeting will be convened with UNESCO. The Secretariat was also informed that the transfer of the visitor centre and its parking lot was under study, and the project would be re-examined by the consultant who recommended its relocation out of the buffer zone.


To improve the management and regular monitoring of the property, the Vat Phou Site Management Authority has recruited a new site manager and qualified staff (1 architect, 1 archaeologist, 1 art historian, 1 engineer, etc.), totalling 29 people.  The State Party has also reported the coexistence of two committees, the National Inter-ministerial Coordinating Committee (NIMCC) and the Champasak local Committee for Cultural and Natural Heritage, with similar roles, responsibilities and members.


As a follow-up to the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) bilateral grant to improve the state of conservation of the World Heritage property, the maintenance of the fully functioning hydraulic system is ensured by the local staff with the assistance of a Japanese expert, dispatched to the site on a regular basis. 

Analysis and Conclusions of the World Heritage Centre, ICOMOS and ICCROM


Decision Adopted: 28 COM 15B.65

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Congratulates the State Party on the actions undertaken to comply with the recommendations of the World Heritage Committee adopted at its 27th session in July 2003;

2. Reiterates the importance of adherence to the government-approved management plan for the property;

3. Encourages the State Party to clarify the distribution of tasks among the different national and provincial authorities involved in the protection and management of the World Heritage property, so as to avoid overlapping of their responsibilities and roles.