Ambassador Ma. Theresa P. Lazaro, Permanent Delegate of the Philippines to UNESCO (2nd from left), delivering PH statement at the plenary of the 38th session of the World Heritage Committee. In the Philippine delegation are Amb. Cristina G. Ortega, Adviser to the UNESCO National Commission of the Philippines (far left), Mr. Michael F. Manalo, Chairperson of the UNESCO National Commission of the Philippines (UNACOM) Culture Committee (far right), and Mr. Eric B. Zerrudo, Vice-Chairperson of the UNACOM Culture Committee (2nd from right).
Representatives of the 191 states parties to the 1972 World Heritage Convention are meeting in Doha, Qatar for the 38th session of the World Heritage Committee from 15-25 June 2014.
Led by H.E. Ma. Theresa P. Lazaro, Ambassador and Permanent Delegate of the Philippines to UNESCO, the Philippines is actively participating in deliberations of the World Heritage Committee.
The Philippines was elected to the Committee, garnering the second highest number of votes during elections at the General Conference of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in 2013.
“Capacity-building is a key priority for a more inclusive and universal World Heritage List,” said Ambassador Lazaro at the plenary session. States parties must work together to strengthen linkages between protection of cultural and natural heritage and sustainable development, she added.
Ambassador Lazaroalso called for “fresh and innovative approaches” to overcome the current financial challenges being faced by the World Heritage Center and UNESCO.
The World Heritage Committee is a 21-member intergovernmental body tasked with promoting implementation of the Convention.
The Committee examines state of conservation reports of numerous World Heritage sites, including those on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
During the meeting, the Committee shall adopt decisions regarding 39 nominations for inscription on the coveted UNESCO World Heritage List. The Philippines’ nomination of Mt. Hamiguitan Wildlife Sanctuary is on the agenda.
Ambassador Lazarohighlighted disaster risk reduction in wake of natural disasters and climate change and promoting gender empowerment as two issuesthat “substantially enhance the Convention’s impact on the ground” for local communities and stakeholders.