1.         Angkor (Cambodia) (C 668)

Year of inscription on the World Heritage List  1992

Criteria  (i)(ii)(iii)(iv)

Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger    1992-2004

Previous Committee Decisions  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/668/documents/

International Assistance

Requests approved: 0 (from 1992-1998)
Total amount approved: USD 113,595
For details, see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/668/assistance/

UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds

Total amount provided to the property: Approximately USD 52 million

Previous monitoring missions

September 2005: technical advisory mission concerning the protection of Zones 1 and 2 of Angkor; In addition, the ad hoc experts of the International Coordinating Committee (ICC) carry out monitoring of the property and of ongoing projects in the complex of Angkor, twice per year, on the occasion of the ICC technical and plenary sessions. 

Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

a) Uncontrolled urban expansion;

b) Lack of an appropriate management system. 

Illustrative material  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/668/

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2010

The State Party submitted a comprehensive “Rapport sur Angkor”, dated January 2010 to address the Committee’s requests and reporting progress as follows:


a) Clarify, including through new legislation if necessary, the rules regarding property rights, ownership and building codes applicable to zones 1 and 2

In a section entitled Management and Occupation of Land, the State Party report notes that sub-decree 50 ANK/ BK expressly created a Department of Environmental Planning of Territory and of Management of the Habitat of the Park of Angkor, charged with analysis, evaluation, monitoring and action related to the situation of the World Heritage inscription, in consideration of the population resident on the site. The report notes actions taken for juridical protection (including a series of decrees, laws and governmental decisions from 1994-2004), territorial protection (including a project to establish community learning centre, projects for community development (encouraging villagers to develop their lands for their use rather than for sale), territorial protection measures to reduce pressures on the Park (including adoption of a Siem Reap Master Plan, severe application of relevant laws, establishing new settlements outside zones 1 and 2, heritage protection awareness building etc.), social protection measures (including efforts to increase public awareness concerning the importance of conservation, and communications links with the A.N.A. and local communities.


b) Enforce existing laws regarding illegal occupation, unauthorized construction and development and park-land appropriation/alienation

The State Party report notes that the sub-decree 50 ANK/ BK has expressly created a Department of Order and Co-operation to deal with such issues. The report documents the efforts of the new Department and its predecessor agency to control, limit and reverse illegal activities. The report quantifies the problem, documenting many hundreds of illegal acts stopped in both 2008 and 2009, including removal of illegal kiosks, removal of sand, etc. The report also notes the importance of balancing control activities with education activities to fully address the scale of illegal activities present on site.


c) Strengthen the capacities of the “Agence pour la protection et la sauvegarde d’Angkor (APSARA) to enable effective land use planning and management, including by providing it with the necessary resources

The State Party report highlights the importance of “Anukret” (sub-decree) 50 ANK/BK of May 2008 which brought new modalities to the organisation and functioning of the Directorate General of  APSARA [the Agence pour la protection et la Sauvegarde d’Angkor].  The report also documents the augmented numbers of staff (professional, operational, security and maintenance) presently employed by APSARA – close to 1600 people, and provides an organisational chart showing their disposition.

The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies consider that the report provides an insightful and integrated overview of the social, economic and cultural complexity of the site, and attempts to position conservation efforts and their effectiveness in that larger context. The report emphasizes the improvements for site management brought about by sub-decree 50 ANK/ BK and its re-ordering of institutional arrangements for care of the property. As well, in an effort to acknowledge challenges and shortcomings, the report emphasizes at several points that the characteristics of the site (large size – 401 square kilometres, rural population of 100,000 people whose aspirations to upgrade their living conditions place them in continuous direct conflict with many of the conservation objectives of the Park) make rapid achievement of the conservation objectives underlined by the Committee quite difficult.

The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies note as well that the State Party has strengthened its institutional framework to enable effective land use planning and management and begun to enforce controls and reverse encroachments within the property. They also note that the project for the development of a heritage management framework for the property has finally been launched, with support from Australia and Cambodia and consider that it would be important that this process takes into account the above issues.

Analysis and Conclusions of the World Heritage Centre, ICOMOS and ICCROM


Decision Adopted: 34 COM 7B.65

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined Document WHC-10/34.COM/7B.Add,

2. Recalling Decision 32 COM 7B.65, adopted at its 32nd session (Quebec City, 2008),

3. Notes with satisfaction the efforts of the State Party to restructure institutional arrangements and the action of the Agence pour la protection et la sauvegarde d'Angkor (APSARA), facilitated by issuing of sub-decree 50 ANK/ BK in May 2008, and to bring increased emphasis to increasing heritage awareness among local communities;

4. Also notes the progress made by the State Party in controlling illegal activities within the property, and requests the State Party to continue these efforts in the future;

5. Also requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2014, a report on the progress made on the issues mentioned above, including on the results of the project for the development of a heritage management framework for Angkor, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 38th session in 2014.