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Serengeti National Park

United Republic of Tanzania
Factors affecting the property in 1999*
  • Ground transport infrastructure
  • Identity, social cohesion, changes in local population and community
  • Illegal activities
  • Impacts of tourism / visitor / recreation
  • Management systems/ management plan
Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
  • Poaching
  • Rapidly growing human population
  • Poorly designed ad-hoc tourism development projects
  • Need to strengthen the coordination with the trans-border Masai Mara Reserve in Kenya 
International Assistance: requests for the property until 1999
Requests approved: 4 (from 1989-1999)
Total amount approved : 59,500 USD
Missions to the property until 1999**
Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 1999

Previous deliberations:   Ngorongoro Conservation Area was included in the List of World Heritage in Danger in 1984 due to poaching and threats posed by illegal agricultural encroachments. Continuous monitoring and technical assistance projects contributed towards improving the state of conservation leading to the removal of the site from the List of World Heritage in Danger in 1989.


New information: IUCN’s East African Regional Office has been approached by a consultancy firm working with the Tanzanian Ministry of Works to provide input to a feasibility study on a gravel access road to Loliondo (the administrative centre of the Ngorongoro District).  Four routes are being considered for upgrading.  Two of the routes proposed would pass through the Ngorongoro Conservation Area.  The other route would cut across the eastern end of Olduvai Gorge.  However, there are two other possible alignments that start from Monduli and Mto-wa-Mbu.  The two roads would come together near Engaruka, from where the road would pass between Lake Natron and Oldonyo Lengai volcano before ascending the Rift Valley escarpment towards Loliondo. IUCN has welcomed the consultative approach taken by the Government of Tanzania in the planning phase of this road.  IUCN considers that options should be carefully considered and should take fully into account potential impacts on the values of these two sites.


Decisions adopted by the Committee in 1999
23 BUR VII.19
International Assistance

The Bureau examined specific requests for international assistance and took the following decisions.


Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan - "Training for Nomination of Natural and Mixed Properties as World Heritage in Central Asia" (Training Assistance) - US$ 29,440 requested

The Bureau approved an amount of US$ 29,440 from the natural heritage training funds for this project, subject to the WWF Russia Programme (WWF-PRO) confirming, before 31 October 1999, that it has been successful in raising the balance of US$ 29,900 needed for the implementation of the project.

The Bureau also recommended that WWF-PRO submit to the World Heritage Centre, a list of organisations providing cash and in-kind contributions to meet the balance of US$ 29,900 needed for the project and a full list of the central Asian participants to be involved in the implementation of the project.

Regional - "Asia Pacific Training Workshop on Integrated Conservation and Development Planning: the role of Multilateral Agreements Related to Biological Diversity" (Training Assistance) - US$ 30,000 requested

The Bureau approved a sum of US$ 30,000 for this project and requested the World Heritage Centre and IUCN to negotiate with developed States Parties in Europe and North America to support the participation of their site managers and use the savings thus obtained to support as many site managers as possible from developing countries of Africa, Asia and Latin America.

The Bureau also recommended that preference be given to choosing managers of sites that have the twin designations of World Heritage and Biosphere Reserves, to the extent possible.

Democratic Republic Republic of Congo - "Support to Resident Staff in the World Heritage sites in Danger – Garamba, Kahuzi Biega and Virunga National Parks and the Okapi Faunal Reserve" (Emergency Assistance) - US$ 105,000 requested

The Bureau approved the sum of US$ 105,000 for paying staff salaries allowances, purchase of equipment and  undertaking training, construction of guard posts and monitoring activities benefiting the four sites.

The Bureau decided that US$ 105,000 shall comprise of the following budget components:

  • US$ 75,000 as emergency assistance using the US$ 50,471 of non-earmarked funds available under the 1999 allocation and transferring US$ 24,529 from the unspent amount of US$ 167,863 available under technical co-operation for natural heritage;
  • US$ 30,000 as technical co-operation from the remaining balance of US$ 143,334 remaining unspent under technical co-operation for natural heritage, after a sum of US$ 24,529 has been transferred to emergency assistance as indicated above.

In addition the Bureau:

  • commended the dedication of the staff resident in all four sites;
  • commended the commitment of the Task Force comprising Institut Congolaise pour la Conservation de la Nature (ICCN), GTZ (Germany) and several international nongovernmental organisations supporting the conservation of the four sites, and endorsed their efforts to develop proposals to raise support from the international community for the sites over the medium term (3-4 years); and
  • requested the Centre and IUCN to report to the twenty-third session of the Committee, in Marrakesh, Morocco (29 November–4 December 1999) an assessment of the effectiveness of the delivery of these funds to site staff with the assistance of the Task Force and recommendations concerning possible additional assistance to the four sites that may be considered by the Committee for the year 2000.  

United Republic of Tanzania - "Strengthening Protection Infrastructure of Tanzanian World Heritage sites – Serengeti and Kilimanjaro National Parks" (Technical Co-operation) - US$ 50,000 requested

The Bureau requested the Centre to co-operate with the equipment purchase unit of UNESCO, in order to transfer the two vehicles, purchased in 1998 for two sites in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) but are currently stored in Mombassa, Kenya, to the Serengeti and Kilimanjaro National Parks of Tanzania.

The Bureau requested the Centre to cooperate with the UN Resident Co-ordinator’s Office as well as the UNESCO Office in Nairobi, and the Kenyan Government to request the Kenyan Government to waive vehicle-storage charges payable to the Ports authorities in Kenya and the cost of the transport of the vehicles to the United Republic of Tanzania.

In the event that such costs cannot be waived, the Bureau authorised the Chairperson to approve the amount needed to pay storage and transport charges, upon the submission of detailed invoices by the Centre, under the technical co-operation funds available for natural heritage projects in 1999.


Cuba - "Training course in preventive conservation" (Training Assistance) - US$ 30,000 requested

The Bureau recalled that the Committee at its twenty-second session had set aside US$ 30,000 for a training activity  proposed by Cuba.

The Bureau examined a revised proposal for a training course in preventive conservation that had been prepared by Cuba in collaboration with an ICCROM expert.

Subsequently, the Bureau approved the implementation of this assistance for an amount of US$ 30,000 as proposed by Cuba.

Lithuania - "Vilnius Old Town Revitalization Programme" (Technical Co-operation) - US$ 30,000 requested

The Bureau thanked the Delegate of Italy for his generous offer and requested the Secretariat to pursue this matter urgently in close collaboration with the Permanent Delegations of Italy and Lithuania.

Syrian Arab Republic - «Establishing an overall management plan of Palmyre – 2nd phase» (Technical Co-operation) - US$ 30,000 requested

The Bureau recommended that the Committee approve an amount of US$ 20,000 from the 2000 budget of the World Heritage Fund.

The Bureau also recommended that, during the next mission, contacts be made with the funding sources to obtain the necessary resources for the implementation of this management plan.

23 COM X.B.28
State of conservation reports of natural properties noted by the Committee

X.28 The Committee noted the decisions of the twenty-third extraordinary session of the Bureau as reflected in the Report of the Bureau session (Working Document WHC-99/CONF.209/6) included as Annex VIII to this report. Additional observations made during the Committee session are reflected below.

Shark Bay, Western Australia (Australia)

Wet Tropics of Queensland (Australia)

Heard and McDonald Islands (Australia)

The Delegate of Australia thanked IUCN for the consultative process started, which could be a model for other State Parties. He also informed the Committee that the area of marine protection around Macquerie Island had been extended and now comprises 16 million ha, the world's largest highly protected marine zone.

Belovezhskaya Pushcha/Bialowieza Forest (Belarus/Poland)

Dja Faunal Reserve (Cameroon)

Los Katios National Park (Colombia)

The Delegate of Colombia informed the Committee that a visit by a delegation from the Ministry for Environment to Los Katios was recently carried out. The visit included areas that were previously not accessible. He emphasized that the proposal to grant collective land ownership over 100,000ha would be outside the Park in the buffer zone. He commented that his Government would be pleased to receive the visit of the monitoring mission to this site in 2000. The Colombian authorities have enhanced transboundary co-operation with Darien National Park (Panama) and strengthened the protected area system.

Morne Trois Pitons National Park (Dominica)

Galapagos Islands (Ecuador)

The Observer of the United States underlined his Government's role in safeguarding Galapagos Islands and congratulated the Government of Ecuador on progress made. He noted the landmark decision of the Galapagos Law and questioned whether it had been implemented, in particular concerning the forty-mile zone. The Secretariat informed the Committee that some threats related to illegal fishing have been reported. IUCN noted the implementation of this pioneering legislation is vital and specific regulations need to be developed and implemented as soon as possible. The Delegate of Ecuador provided information from the Ministry of Environment noting progress concerning control of introduced species and general improvements in relation to biodiversity conservation at the site. Concerning the control of the 40-mile zone, she stated that the law has not yet been implemented, but that the basis for the conservation and environmental control is there. She thanked the Committee for all its efforts to safeguard the Galapagos.

Kaziranga National Park (India)

Komodo National Park (Indonesia)

Mount Kenya National Park (Kenya)

Sagarmatha National Park (Nepal)

The Observer of Nepal expressed his gratitude for the international support for the important project on tourism carried out at Sagarmatha National Park. The Observer of the United Kingdom noted that it is a ground-breaking project.

Te Wahipounamu - South West New Zealand (New Zealand)

Arabian Oryx Sanctuary (Oman)

The Delegate of Thailand noted the raised serious concerns raised by the Bureau regarding the management of this site, given the decline in numbers of the Arabian Oryx and the fact that the boundary marking and management planning is long overdue for completion. He recalled that the Committee inscribed the site without legislation and management plan in December 1994. He highlighted the Operational Guidelines in relation to the deletion of properties. The Delegate of Benin noted that rigour was not always applied in the past years and that a number of sites would not have been accepted if they were presented today. Concerning the question of deletion, a site would be put first on the List of World Heritage in Danger. The Delegate of Thailand made it clear that he had not proposed the deletion of the site from the World Heritage List and that he was totally aware of the modalities in that respect. The Observer of the United Kingdom noted that similar problems concerned a number of sites and that these issues would certainly be dealt with by the periodic reporting process. IUCN pointed out that it had consistently raised concerns about this site. IUCN noted that legislation does not have effect if there is not sufficient resources for its implementation. The Chairperson reminded the Committee members about the rarity of Arab natural sites on the List. In concluding, the Chairperson thanked the Committee for the debate and noted that awareness needs to be raised in countries about the World Heritage Convention, its obligations and World Heritage values to be preserved for future generations, in particular among decision-makers. He thanked the Delegate of Thailand for his statement and encouraged the Committee to further reflect on how to enhance the protection of World Heritage sites.

Huascaran National Park (Peru)

Lake Baikal (Russian Federation)

The Observer of Russia requested that the information provided during the adoption of the report of the twenty-third extraordinary session of the Bureau on this site be included in the Bureau report.

Bwindi Impenetrable Forest (Uganda)

Gough Island (United Kingdom)

Ngorongoro Conservation Area and the Serengeti National Park (United Republic of Tanzania)

Canaima National Park (Venezuela)

Ha Long Bay (Vietnam)

Mosi-oa-Tunya/Victoria Falls (Zambia/Zimbabwe)

The Bureau may wish to adopt the following text and transmit it to the Committee for noting:

“The Bureau invites the State Party to fully extend its co-operation to involve UNESCO and IUCN in the consultation process and in considering the various options available, and searching for new alternatives if necessary, with a view to minimising impacts of the road construction project on the two World Heritage sites. The Bureau requests the Centre and IUCN submit a status report on the proposed road construction project, impacts of the various options available on the two sites and recommendations which the Bureau could submit to the consideration of the State Party at the twenty-fourth session of the Bureau in mid-2000.”

Report year: 1999
United Republic of Tanzania
Date of Inscription: 1981
Category: Natural
Criteria: (vii)(x)
Documents examined by the Committee
arrow_circle_right 23COM (1999)

* : The threats indicated are listed in alphabetical order; their order does not constitute a classification according to the importance of their impact on the property.
Furthermore, they are presented irrespective of the type of threat faced by the property, i.e. with specific and proven imminent danger (“ascertained danger”) or with threats which could have deleterious effects on the property’s Outstanding Universal Value (“potential danger”).

** : All mission reports are not always available electronically.