Take advantage of the search to browse through the World Heritage Centre information.

Sangha Trinational

Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo
Factors affecting the property in 2019*
  • Civil unrest
  • Forestry /wood production
  • Ground transport infrastructure
  • Illegal activities
  • Major linear utilities
  • Mining
Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
  • Civil unrest
  • Poaching
  • Mining
  • Road and river transport project
  • Optical fibre project in the vicinity of the property
  • Forestry exploitation permits in the buffer zone
UNESCO Extra-Budgetary Funds until 2019

Total amount granted: 250,000 Euros from 2008 to 2013 and 400 000 Euros from 2016 to 2018 through the Central African World Heritage Forest Initiative (CAWHFI) funded by the European Union

International Assistance: requests for the property until 2019
Requests approved: 0
Total amount approved : 0 USD
Missions to the property until 2019**

October 2016: World Heritage Centre/IUCN Reactive Monitoring mission to Congo and Central African Republic component of the property

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2019

On 30 November 2018, the States Parties submitted a joint report on the state of conservation of the property, available at http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/1380/documents/, with the following updates:

  • Anti-poaching efforts were further strengthened through increased financial and human resources, resulting in 147 arrests and 76 convictions in 2018. Special wildlife crime units operate across the property and SMART (Spatial Monitoring and Reporting Tool) is being implemented;
  • Poaching of large mammals, especially forest elephants, persists across the property, reportedly as a result of the political crisis in Central African Republic (CAR) and increasing unemployment following the closure of forestry companies around the property ;
  • Equipment to further enhance aerial and fluvial surveillance of illegal activities across the property has been acquired;
  • In November 2017, the Minister of Mines, Industry and Technological Development of Cameroon temporarily suspended his regional and departmental representatives’ right to issue authorizations for artisanal mining;
  • The cancellation of the three new mining exploration licences awarded to Mongokele Mining Company in 2016, in the buffer zone of the Cameroonian component is underway. In Congo, in 2017 illegal mining licences in the buffer zone held by two mining companies were seized and the operators expelled;
  • To rehabilitate the areas affected by gold mining, a restoration plan is being designed and a joint action plan will be validated in 2019. In the CAR component, 17 ha of degraded land was reforested;
  • In the buffer zone of the CAR component, two forestry concessions (EPA 189 and 190) located in the buffer zone are developing land use plans, and Environmental Impact Assessments (EIAs) are reportedly underway. In Cameroon and Congo, one company remains to be certified in each of their buffer zones;
  • The feasibility study and EIA for the Ouesso-Bangui road are scheduled to begin in January 2019, and will take into account IUCN’s World Heritage Advice Note on Environmental Assessment;
  • In all components, efforts are underway to train law enforcement staff on human rights issues and the rights of indigenous people. A Code of ethics and conduct for rangers taking part in transboundary patrols has also been developed and disseminated to prevent conflicts with the communities;
  • After the finalization of the macro-zoning and Management Plan, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) is being developed in Cameroon to formalize the access of indigenous communities to exploit resources, using traditional techniques compatible with the development plan. In Congo, a sustainable community management programme is implemented since mid-2018. In CAR, hunting management plans are being elaborated with the indigenous communities.
Analysis and Conclusion by World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies in 2019

The States Parties have made commendable progress in strengthening their anti-poaching efforts including through the deployment of special wildlife crime units to all components of the property. Nevertheless, the continued presence of poaching activities, especially of elephants, is of utmost concern and affirms the need to further strengthen law enforcement. The World Heritage Centre received further information in November 2018 about the resurgence of elephant poaching in the CAR component of the property, resulting in at least six animals killed.  A letter was sent to the State Party of CAR on 8 January 2019, in accordance with Paragraph 174 of the Operational Guidelines, to request further information about this poaching incident. To date, the State Party has not responded. It is recommended that the States Parties are requested to further strengthen law enforcement efforts, including through transboundary patrols and by following up the judicial process of apprehended poachers.

The removal of illegal mining licences in the buffer zone of the Congolese component is welcomed. However, the delivery of new licences in the buffer zone in Cameroon in 2016 is of concern and the State Party of Cameroon should be requested to take action to ensure their cancellation.  The World Heritage Centre sent a letter to the State Party of Cameroon on 8 January 2019 to request further information such as EIA and maps related to the attribution of these concessions. To date, this letter remains unanswered.

To prevent future cases of mining licences being issued in the property or its buffer zones, the States Parties should be recommended to take a more proactive approach and strengthen the information exchange between the mining and conservation departments before granting exploration or exploitation permits.  For any activities proposed for outside of the buffer zones, the States Parties should ensure that a comprehensive EIA is undertaken, with a specific assessment of the OUV of the property, before allowing any activities to take place.

The progress achieved in certifying the forestry concessions in the buffer zone is noted, but further efforts are needed to ensure that this is completed. Noting that the EIA for EPA 189 was supposed to have been submitted to the World Heritage Centre in December 2018, and that the EIA for EPA 190 is near completion, it is recommended that the States Parties be requested to submit these to the World Heritage Centre for review by IUCN, as soon as they are available.

The State Party’s intention to use the IUCN’s Advice Note in developing the EIA for the Ouesso-Bangui road is appreciated. It should be reiterated that the road construction should not start until the EIA has been completed and submitted to the World Heritage Centre for review by IUCN, in order to determine the potential impact on the OUV of the property, including its integrity.

The efforts to better involve local communities and recognize the rights and traditional livelihoods of the indigenous Baka communities as well as efforts to ensure the respect of human rights by park rangers are welcomed and need to be further strengthened.

Decisions adopted by the Committee in 2019
43 COM 7B.30
Sangha Trinational (Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo) (N 1380rev)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/19/43.COM/7B,
  2. Recalling Decisions 39 COM 7B.2 and 41 COM 7B.19, adopted at its 39th (Bonn, 2015) and 41st (Krakow, 2017) sessions respectively,
  3. Commends the States Parties for further strengthening their collaborative efforts through the allocation of increased financial and human resources to combat poaching, illegal mining and logging within the property and its buffer zones;
  4. Notes with utmost concern that poaching, especially of elephants, is persisting within the property and requests the States Parties to further intensify their law enforcement efforts on the ground including through transboundary patrols and by following up the judicial process of apprehended poachers;
  5. Welcomes the removal of the illegal mining licences in the buffer zone of the Congolese component but notes with concern that three mining licences were awarded by the State Party of Cameroon in the buffer zone and also requests the State Party of Cameroon to take action to ensure their cancellation;
  6. To prevent future cases of mining licences being issued in the property or its buffer zones, encourages the States Parties to take a more proactive approach and strengthen information exchange between the mining and conservation departments before granting exploration and/or exploitation permits, and to ensure that a comprehensive Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is undertaken for all mining projects planned in the buffer zone with a specific assessment of the OUV of the property, before allowing any activities to take place;
  7. Also welcomes efforts to better involve local communities and to recognize the rights and traditional livelihoods of the indigenous Baka communities, as well as efforts to ensure the respect of human rights by park rangers and urges the States Parties to further strengthen these efforts;
  8. Also urges the States Parties to continue their efforts towards certifying the forestry concessions in the buffer zone of the property, and further requests the State Party of the Central African Republic to submit the EIAs for two of the concessions (EPA 189 and 190) to the World Heritage Centre, for review by IUCN, as soon as they are available, ensuring that they are conducted in line with IUCN’s World Heritage Advice Note on Environmental Assessment and specifically assess the potential impacts on the OUV of the property;
  9. Reiterates its request to the States Parties to design and implement a plan for the ecological restoration of sites degraded by any illegal activity, such as gold mining, advancement of the agricultural frontier, harvesting of non-timber forest products and cutting down of timber;
  10. Requests furthermore the States Parties to ensure that the construction of the Ouesso-Bangui road does not start until the EIA has been completed and submitted to the World Heritage Centre for review by IUCN;
  11. Requests moreover, the States Parties to continue implementing all of the recommendations of the 2016 Reactive Monitoring mission;
  12. Finally requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 December 2020, an updated report on the state of conservation of the property and the implementation of the above, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 45th session in 2021.
Draft Decision: 43 COM 7B.30

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/19/43.COM/7B,
  2. Recalling Decisions 39 COM 7B.2 and 41 COM 7B.19, adopted at its 39th (Bonn, 2015) and 41st (Krakow, 2017) sessions respectively,
  3. Commends the States Parties for further strengthening their collaborative efforts through the allocation of increased financial and human resources to combat poaching, illegal mining and logging within the property and its buffer zones;
  4. Notes with utmost concern that poaching, especially of elephants, is persisting within the property and requests the States Parties to further intensify their law enforcement efforts on the ground including through transbourdary patrols and by following up the judicial process of apprehended poachers;
  5. Welcomes the removal of the illegal mining licences in the buffer zone of the Congolese component but notes with concern that three mining licences were awarded by the State Party of Cameroon in the buffer zone and also requests the State Party of Cameroon to take action to ensure their cancellation;
  6. To prevent future cases of mining licences being issued in the property or its buffer zones, encourages the States Parties to take a more proactive approach and strengthen information exchange between the mining and conservation departments before granting exploration and/or exploitation permits, and to ensure that a comprehensive Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is undertaken for all mining projects planned in the buffer zone with a specific assessment of the OUV of the property, before allowing any activities to take place;
  7. Also welcomes efforts to better involve local communities and to recognize the rights and traditional livelihoods of the indigenous Baka communities, as well as efforts to ensure the respect of human rights by park rangers and urges the States Parties to further strengthen these efforts;
  8. Also urges the States Parties to continue their efforts towards certifying the forestry concessions in the buffer zone of the property, and further requests the State Party of the Central African Republic to submit the EIAs for two of the concessions (EPA 189 and 190) to the World Heritage Centre, for review by IUCN, as soon as they are available, ensuring that they are conducted in line with IUCN’s World Heritage Advice Note on Environmental Assessment and specifically assess the potential impacts on the OUV of the property;
  9. Reiterates its request to the States Parties to design and implement a plan for the ecological restoration of sites degraded by any illegal activity, such as gold mining, advancement of the agricultural frontier, harvesting of non-timber forest products and cutting down of timber;
  10. Requests furthermore the States Parties to ensure that the construction of the Ouesso-Bangui road does not start until the EIA has been completed and submitted to the World Heritage Centre for review by IUCN;
  11. Requests moreover, the States Parties to continue implementing all of the recommendations of the 2016 Reactive Monitoring mission;
  12. Finally requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 December 2020, an updated report on the state of conservation of the property and the implementation of the above, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 45th session in 2021.
Report year: 2019
Central African Republic Congo Cameroon
Date of Inscription: 2012
Category: Natural
Criteria: (ix)(x)
Documents examined by the Committee
SOC Report by the State Party
Report (2018) .pdf
arrow_circle_right 43COM (2019)
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.


top