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Cultural Landscape of Honghe Hani Rice Terraces

China
Factors affecting the property in 2015*
  • Impacts of tourism / visitor / recreation
  • Interpretative and visitation facilities
  • Management systems/ management plan
Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
Threats identified at the time of inscription in 2013:
  • Need to put in place a sustainable eco-tourism strategy for the property and its buffer zone
  • Need for an interpretation strategy 
International Assistance: requests for the property until 2015
Requests approved: 0
Total amount approved : 0 USD
Missions to the property until 2015**
Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2015

On 26 January 2015, the State Party submitted a state of conservation report, a summary of which is available at https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/1111/documents. The report provides information about enhanced site management and conservation and also responds to the issues raised at the time of inscription, as follows:

  • In September 2014, a Decision on Enhancing Conservation and Management of the World Heritage Site of Honghe Hani Rice Terraces was adopted. This sets out enhanced legal protection and sustainable development strategies for the forest, villages, rice terraces and water systems, as well as for the traditional culture of the Hani ethnic group;
  • A terrace‐based red rice production cooperative has been established to encourage local residents to continue farming on the terraces and build a green ecology brand for Honghe. Channels for marketing the red rice have been expanded, and well as for other ecological agricultural products, such as tea and duck eggs, to add greater value to local agricultural produce;.
  • A fund of USD 4.825 million has been launched to renovate seven villages and provide guidance on protecting traditional architectural features, and to strengthen traditional craft traditions;
  • Steep slopes on the summit of the terraces have been returned to forest, to improve ecological conditions and sustain the water supply;
  • A research project has been launched with key Universities and scientific institutions to strengthen understanding of the complex cultural/ecological terrace management system.
  • Based on research, market analysis and surveys of carrying capacity, and consultation with the local community, the Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research of the Chinese Academy of Sciences has prepared a Sustainable Tourism Strategic Plan for Cultural Landscape of Hone Rice Terraces in China (2014-2030). Currently the plans being reviewed by the State Administration of Cultural Heritage of China and will be provided to the World Heritage Centre once approved and made public
  • An Interpretation Plan for Cultural Landscape of Honghe Hani Rice Terraces (2014 - 2030) has been prepared. It provides diversified interpretation and presentation and aims to enhance knowledge of the values of the cultural landscape, and raise awareness of heritage conservation and compliance with international conventions and Chinese laws and regulations.
  • The workshop was held in October 2014 and included participants from the World Heritage Centre, ICOMOS, ICCROM and more than 80 international and national scholars and experts. The in-depth discussions, case studies and field studies resulted in the formulation of the Honghe Recommendations on the Sustainable Development of Terraces Cultural Landscapes.
Analysis and Conclusion by World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies in 2015

It is well noted that the State Party has made great efforts in responding to the recommendations of the Committee at the time of inscription, and, in particular, taken important steps to strengthen the sustainable management and protection requirements for the property. There has been a satisfying development of the terracebased red rice production cooperative to encourage local residents to continue with farming and help marketing their products. Continuing the farming practice is a crucial aspect for sustaining the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) of the property and it is in this context that the economic support for the livelihood of the local population is important.   

It is recommended that the World Heritage Committee commend the State Party for the successful organization of the International Workshop and welcome the Honghe Recommendations on Sustainable Development of Terraced Cultural Landscapes. The State Party should also be encouraged to maintain dialogue with other properties in Asia that face similar challenges in managing extensive terrace landscapes.

It is hoped that the State Party will pursue the finalisation, adoption and implementation of the Sustainable Tourism Strategic Plan and the Interpretation Plan in order to provide guidance to the tourism planning from the start. Attention should be paid to the optimum carrying capacity of the landscape for tourists in order to minimise impact on the natural environment and disruption to the traditional cultural life of the Hani people. Furthermore, guidelines should be prepared to regulate tourism infrastructure development in order to ensure the integrity of the villages. In this respect, the impacts of viewing platforms and signage should be carefully reviewed. The State Party should periodically review and update the tourism strategy for the property. 

Decisions adopted by the Committee in 2015
39 COM 7B.61
Cultural Landscape of Honghe Hani Rice Terraces (China) (C 1111)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC-15/39.COM/7B,
  2. Recalling Decision 37 COM 8B.24, adopted at its 37th session (Phnom Penh, 2013),
  3. Notes the considerable steps taken by the State Party to respond to the recommendations of the Committee;
  4. Welcomes the strengthened structures to promote sustainable development of the rice terraces and in particular, efforts to add value to local agricultural produce, and foster traditional local practices;
  5. Commends the State Party for organizing an International Workshop on rice terrace landscapes and takes note of the Honghe Recommendations on Sustainable Development of Terraced Cultural Landscapes;
  6. Encourages the State Party, to maintain dialogue with other properties in Asia that face similar challenges in managing extensive terrace landscapes;
  7. Recommends that the State Party finalizes, adopts and implements the Sustainable Tourism Strategic Planning and the Interpretation Planning documents, and takes into consideration the need to carefully control visitor numbers, and to prepare guidelines for regulating tourism infrastructure development within the property, including impacts of viewing platforms and signage, and requests the State Party to submit copies of the final plans to the World Heritage Centre.
Draft Decision: 39 COM 7B.61

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC-15/39.COM/7B,
  2. Recalling Decision 37 COM24, adopted at its 37th session (Phnom Penh, 2013),
  3. Notes the considerable steps taken by the State Party to respond to the recommendations of the Committee;
  4. Welcomes the strengthened structures to promote sustainable development of the rice terraces and in particular, efforts to add value to local agricultural produce, and foster traditional local practices;
  5. Commends the State Party for organizing an International Workshop on rice terrace landscapes and takes note of the Honghe Recommendations on Sustainable Development of Terraced Cultural Landscapes;
  6. Encourages the State Party, to maintain dialogue with other properties in Asia that face similar challenges in managing extensive terrace landscapes;
  7. Recommends that the State Party finalizes, adopts and implements the Sustainable Tourism Strategic Planning and the Interpretation Planning documents, and takes into consideration the need to carefully control visitor numbers, and to prepare guidelines for regulating tourism infrastructure development within the property, including impacts of viewing platforms and signage, and requests the State Party to submit copies of the final plans to the World Heritage Centre.
Report year: 2015
China
Date of Inscription: 2013
Category: Cultural
Criteria: (iii)(v)
Documents examined by the Committee
SOC Report by the State Party
Report (2015) .pdf
arrow_circle_right 39COM (2015)
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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