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Mayor Eva Marie S. Medina gave a talk on the sustainable conservation management model of the City of Vigan at the Salon des Délegués in UNESCO Miollis on 9 September 2013.  

Organized jointly by the Philippine Permanent Delegation to UNESCO and the UNESCO National Commission of the Philippines, the lecture was part of the country’s efforts to share the country’s experiences and expertise in world heritage management.  

In her opening remarks, Philippine Ambassador Cristina G. Ortega mentioned that the Philippines would welcome the opportunity to serve the greater community and that it is for this reason the country has put forward its candidature for a seat in the World Heritage Committee this year.   

During her talk, Mayor Medina said that “It is definitely a very difficult situation to be in – choosing between centuries old heritage against the needs of the present. The Vigan experience however demonstrates that heritage conservation can be pursued hand in hand with the economic development of a heritage site.”

In attendance during the lecture were numerous Ambassadors and Permanent Delegates of UNESCO Member States.  Several attendees to the event commented that the lecture was very informative and that other world heritage sites, especially in developing countries, can learn from Vigan’s experience.    

The Historic City of Vigan is one of five World Heritage sites found in the Philippines.  In 2012, it was selected as a Model of Best Practices in World Heritage Site Management by the World Heritage Center. This distinction was officially announced during the 40th anniversary celebrations of the World Heritage Convention held last November 2012 in Kyoto, Japan.  Selected among 28 other candidates, the City of Vigan was recognized by the World Heritage Center because of the pivotal role played by the local government and local communities in heritage conservation.

Vigan Mayor Eva Marie S. Medina in UNESCO Salon des Délegués