Norway increases support of natural heritage in Africa


Virunga National Park, Democratic Republic of the Congo

As part of its new cooperation programme with UNESCO, the Government of Norway committed an additional amount of NOK 50 million over two years (equivalent to USD 5,64 million), to further strengthen efforts to improve the state of conservation of World Heritage sites in Africa, in particular natural World Heritage properties and those inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Norway already provided a first contribution in July 2019, which enabled the World Heritage Centre to develop and implement a range of ambitious activities towards the preservation of six natural, two cultural and one mixed site in Africa. Norway also supported the Rapid Response Facility, an innovative financing tool which provides rapid support to natural sites facing an emergency situation. In 2020, so far RRF grants were provided to 5 natural sites in Africa, Asia and Latin America.

“During its current tenure as a World Heritage Committee member, Norway has put a clear emphasis on the need for States Parties to commit to the conservation of World Heritage sites,” said Mechtild Rossler, Director of the UNESCO World Heritage Centre. “This financial support allows the World Heritage Centre to assist States Parties in Africa in tackling urgent conservation issues which threaten the Outstanding Universal Value of these properties. It is an exemplary demonstration of international solidarity for conserving our shared heritage, one of the guiding principles of the World Heritage Convention.”