Year of inscription on the World Heritage List 1985
Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger 1985-2007
Previous Committee Decisions see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/323/documents/
Requests approved: 0
Total amount approved: USD 118,000
For details, see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/323/assistance/
UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds
Total amount granted: USD 450,000 from the Government of Japan and from the Riksantikvaren (Norwegian Cultural Heritage Directorate)
Previous monitoring missions
May/June 2004: Joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS Reactive Monitoring mission; February 2006: Joint World Heritage Centre/CRAterre-ENSAG/Getty Conservation Institute mission; February 2007: Joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS mission; December 2012: Joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS/ICCROM Reactive Monitoring mission; April 2016: Joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS/ICCROM Reactive Monitoring mission
Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports
Illustrative material see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/323/
Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2017
A joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS/ICCROM Reactive Monitoring mission visited the property in April 2016. Subsequently, the State Party submitted a report on the state of conservation of the property on 8 December 2016 and updated information on 2 March 2017. A summary of this report and the mission report are available at https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/323/documents. The State Party provides the following information:
The following actions are planned for 2017:
The Reactive Monitoring mission made it possible to collect the following additional information:
As part of the national strategy to make Abomey one of the main tourism hubs by enhancing the heritage, the State Party informed the Centre that feasibility studies are underway for restoration works and museum projects in Abomey (Estimated cost: 123 billion CFA francs – approx. USD 204 million).
Analysis and Conclusions of the World Heritage Centre, ICOMOS and ICCROM
The information provided in the State Party's report reflects its efforts to address the main concerns expressed in recent Committee decisions. It is encouraging to note that the State Party has foreseen funding for the evaluation of the 2007-2011 lapsed management plan and for the development of a new management plan for the property. The completion of the management plan remains the highest priority. It is recommended that the Committee take note of the State Party's intention to revise the management plan and urges it to finalize the plan as soon as possible.
Restoration works on the parts of the property damaged by the January and December 2015 fires have been completed. However, it is regrettable that the report does not provide sufficient information on the December fire. It is also recommended that the Committee take note that the State Party has carried out the restoration work on the parts of the property damaged by the fires.
While acknowledging the progress made, the overall state of conservation of the property remains a concern. It is imperative that measures be taken to prevent degradation related to vandalism, fire, insecurity, insalubrity, and termite attacks. It is regrettable that the State Party does not provide information on the development of the risk management plan and on fire prevention measures. It is also a matter of concern that some of the rehabilitation work on the components of the property, including the construction of private residences of the royal families on the property and in the buffer zone, are not in conformity with the rules and principles of heritage conservation, safeguarding and protection.
The State Party’s decision to appoint an official with special responsibility for the management of the collections and administration of the Historical Museum of Abomey, together with a building overseer, is commendable, but the recruitment has still not been carried out.
Various tourism and cultural projects proposed by the State Party, national and foreign partners, and in particular activities undertaken in the framework of cooperation with the city of Albi, should be continued. The results of ongoing feasibility studies for the upgrading of Abomey as a tourism hub will be submitted to the Centre for review by the Advisory Bodies.
It is recommended that the Committee encourage the State Party to develop a holistic tourism management strategy as part of the management plan.
Insofar as the various dysfunctions noted continue to be a serious threat to the property, it is recommended that the Committee acknowledge the actions carried out but that it express its concern about the general state of conservation of the property and the inadequacy of progress since the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger in 2007, and that it encourages the State Party to implement, as soon as possible and in close collaboration with the various stakeholders, all the recommendations of the mission reports of 2012 and 2016.
Decision Adopted: 41 COM 7B.66
The World Heritage Committee,