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Bahla Fort

Oman
Factors affecting the property in 2002*
  • Commercial development
  • Management systems/ management plan
Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
  • Degradation of the structures;
  • Use of recent construction materials (cement, etc.)
  • Need for a management plan
International Assistance: requests for the property until 2002
Requests approved: 2 (from 1988-1988)
Total amount approved : 57,000 USD
Missions to the property until 2002**

October 1988: ICOMOS mission; March 1994: UNESCO World Heritage Centre mission; December 1994: ICOMOS expert mission; May-June 1995; September 1996; October 1997; September-October 1998: expert missions; May 2001: World Heritage Centre mission;  November-December 2001: World Heritage Centre experts mission

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2002

The World Heritage Centre fielded an expert mission to the site from 28 November to 5 December 2001, to review the progress of the Management Plan and conservation works at the site. While the UNESCO experts found that conservation works at the Fort were proceeding satisfactorily, some concerns were expressed in their report on the progress of the Management Plan, entrusted by the Omani authorities to a consultant firm based in Oman. After reviewing a draft of the Stage 1 Report prepared by the consultant firm, the experts insisted on the need to further develop a thorough analysis and survey of the cultural and natural values of the site (including the Oasis and its surroundings), which apparently had not been sufficiently covered by the Ministry of Heritage and Culture in their Terms of Reference. Moreover, the UNESCO experts recommended that more attention be paid to ensure that needs and opinions of the local community be effectively taken into account in the consultative process leading to the preparation of the Management Plan. The World Heritage Centre, to this day, has not received copy of the Stage 1 Report.

On the tender launched by the Ministry of Trade, for the construction of a new market within the Bahla Oasis, which was a cause for concern of the World Heritage Centre mission to Oman of May 2001, the Terms of Reference for its design have apparently been modified in consultation with the Ministry of Heritage and Culture. The Centre, however, has not received any information on progress in this matter.

Decisions adopted by the Committee in 2002
26 COM 21A.12
Bahla Fort (Oman)
The World Heritage Committee,

1. Commends the Omani authorities for the substantial achievements in the advancement of conservation works at the Fort, and for engaging in the preparation of the Management Plan;

2. Recommends that the State Party ensure as a matter of urgency the necessary technical supervision of the conservation works being implemented at the site, and that a comprehensive survey and analysis of cultural and natural values of the Bahla Oasis and its surroundings be included in the scope of work of the consultant firm;

3. Expresses its concern with regard to the proposed construction of a new market within the site and suggests that an environmental impact assessment be made of this new construction on the values of the site; 

4. Requests that the State Party transmit to the Centre a copy of all reports prepared by the consultant as well as any technical documentation relating to the proposed construction of the new market within the Oasis, including an assessment of its potential impact on the values of the site;

5. Requests the State Party to submit by 1 February 2003, a report on the progress of all the above-mentioned issues for examination at its 27th session in June/July 2003;

6. Decides to retain the site on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

The Committee may wish to adopt the following decision:

 

"The Committee commends the Omani authorities for the substantial achievement in the advancement of conservation works at the Fort, and for the preparation of the Management Plan. The Committee, however, recommends the State Party to ensure that a comprehensive survey and analysis of cultural and natural values of the Bahla Oasis and its surroundings be included in the scope of work of the consultant firm. The Committee, furthermore, requests that the State Party transmit to the Centre a copy of all Reports prepared by the consultant as well as any technical documentation relating to the proposed construction of a new market within the Oasis. The Committee, finally, requests the State Party to submit a report on the progress of all the above mentioned issues for examination by the 27th session of the Bureau in April 2003. The Committee decides to retain this site in List of World Heritage in Danger."

Report year: 2002
Oman
Date of Inscription: 1987
Category: Cultural
Criteria: (iv)
Danger List (dates): 1988-2004
Documents examined by the Committee
arrow_circle_right 26COM (2002)
Exports

* : 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.


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