Expert visits Bagan pagodas ahead of World Heritage decision

YE MON | FRONTIER

BAGAN — An Australian expert from the International Council on Monuments and Sites arrived in Bagan on September 15 to consider Myanmar’s application for World Heritage listing for the ancient city.

Mr Richard Mackay is researching a report that will be submitted the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s World Heritage Committee ahead of a decision in 2019.

Nyein Su Wai Kyaw Soe | Frontier

Nyein Su Wai Kyaw Soe | Frontier

He met with local community representatives at the Bagan Archaeological Museum on September 19 and has additional meetings scheduled over the coming days, including with local hoteliers on September 20 and with Mandalay Region Chief Minister Dr Zaw Myint Maung on September 22.

Support more independent journalism like this. Sign up to be a Frontier member.

Nyein Su Wai Kyaw Soe | Frontier

Nyein Su Wai Kyaw Soe | Frontier

Bagan resident Ko Naing Tun, who attended today’s meeting, told Frontier that Mackay solicited opinion about the management of the archaeological zone.

“We pointed out that authorities are still mismanaging Bagan. We are concerned that this will affect the decision to include Bagan on the World Heritage list,” he said.

Nyein Su Wai Kyaw Soe | Frontier

Nyein Su Wai Kyaw Soe | Frontier

A World Heritage listing application has two parts: one is devoted to the heritage area, its monuments and mapping, and the other is a comprehensive management plan.

A constant barrier to listing since the initial attempt was made in 1996 has been inappropriate commercial development in the Bagan Archeological Zone. 

nswks-11.jpg

Nyein Su Wai Kyaw Soe | Frontier

In January, Myanmar submitted its final nomination dossier for Bagan to UNESCO. In submitting the dossier, the government pledged to implement a management plan for the Bagan heritage zone that covers issues such as local businesses, social issues, agriculture, transportation and tourism.

According to a 2017 survey by the Association of Myanmar Architects, there are 3,822 monuments in Bagan, including temples, stupas, monasteries and pagodas.

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on email

More stories

Latest Issue

Stories in this issue
Myanmar enters 2021 with more friends than foes
The early delivery of vaccines is one of the many boons of the country’s geopolitics, but to really take advantage, Myanmar must bury the legacy of its isolationist past.
Will the Kayin BGF go quietly?
The Kayin State Border Guard Force has come under intense pressure from the Tatmadaw over its extensive, controversial business interests and there’s concern the ultimatum could trigger fresh hostilities in one of the country’s most war-torn areas.

Stay on top of Myanmar current affairs with our Daily Briefing and Media Monitor newsletters

Our fortnightly magazine is available in print, digital, or a combination beginning at $80 a year

Sign up for our Frontier Fridays newsletter. It’s a free weekly round-up featuring the most important events shaping Myanmar