Ms Marina Schneider, Principal Legal Officer and Treaty Depositary at UNIDROIT attended the regional conference from 29 to 30 June 2021 as part of the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the 1970 Convention on Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property, organised by the UNESCO Office in Bangkok.
One of the objectives of the conference was to identify current obstacles to the ratification of the 1970 UNESCO and 1995 UNIDROIT Conventions and suggest ways for UNESCO Member States in the region to join these instruments.
The Conference’s aim was to raise awareness in Asia and the Pacific on the urgency to strengthen efforts against illicit trafficking of cultural property, as well as to ratify and implement the 1970 UNESCO and the 1995 UNIDROIT Conventions, in view of the low rate of ratification in the region. The 1995 UNIDROIT Convention was ratified by 7 countries, Afghanistan, Cambodia, China, Iran, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Myanmar and New Zealand (which ratified both instruments at the same time to stress their complementarity), and Pakistan is a Signatory State. A presentation of the 1995 UNIDROIT Convention was made in the introductory session and a specific panel was dedicated to “Challenges of ratification of the two Conventions and legislative convergence”.
At the end of the conference, the participants agreed on a list of challenges and priorities – among which the ratification of the 1970 and 1995 Conventions –, best practices and recommendations, which will be compiled in a report to be presented at the International Conference celebrating the 50th anniversary of the 1970 Convention, tentatively scheduled for 14 September 2021.
H.E. Dr. Phoeurng Sackona, Minister of Culture and Fine Arts, Cambodia, and Mr. Hu Bing, Deputy Administrator, National Cultural Heritage Administration, China, concluded the Conference recalling the importance for countries of the region to become a Party to the 1970 UNESCO and 1995 UNIDROIT Conventions.
| H.E. Dr. Phoeurng Sackona,
Minister of Culture and Fine Arts,
| Mr. Hu Bing, Deputy Administrator,
National Cultural Heritage Administration,
-> See the final programme
-> The meeting recordings are available on UNESCO’s YouTube Channel:
-> To learn more about the 1995 UNIDROIT Convention on Stolen or Illegally Exported Cultural