7.COM 6

The Committee,

  1. Having examined Document ITH/12/7.COM/6,
  2. Recalling Articles 7, 29 and 30 of the Convention concerning reports by the States Parties,
  3. Further recalling Chapter V of the Operational Directives,
  4. Thanks the States Parties that submitted periodic reports for the 2012 reporting cycle and invites the States Parties that have not yet submitted the expected reports to duly submit them at the earliest opportunity;
  5. Decides to submit to the General Assembly the ‘Overview and summary of the 2012 reports of States Parties on the implementation of the Convention and on the current status of all elements inscribed on the Representative List’, as annexed to this decision;
  6. Requests the Secretariat to inform States Parties concerned at least twelve months prior to the respective deadline for submission of periodic reports and encourages States Parties concerned to respect the statutory deadlines in submitting their periodic reports.
  7. Congratulates the States Parties that integrate intangible cultural heritage in their national development strategies and call attention in their reports to the contribution of intangible cultural heritage to the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals, and to the important role that intangible cultural heritage plays as a guarantee of sustainable development;
  8. Welcomes the attention given by States Parties to the tangible heritage associated with intangible cultural heritage and to the natural spaces ‘whose existence is necessary for expressing the intangible cultural heritage’ (Article 14 (c) of the Convention);
  9. Further welcomes the diverse initiatives of States Parties to implement intellectual property protections and other forms of legal protection for intangible cultural heritage, and to provide advantageous treatment such as tax exemptions, while also cautioning that certificates of origin put at risk the evolving character of intangible cultural heritage while other measures such as advice on packaging and design of products and market-driven mechanisms may not sufficiently ensure that the communities concerned are the primary beneficiaries;
  10. Recalls the cautions in the Operational Directives against ‘de-contextualiz[ing] or denaturaliz[ing] intangible cultural heritage manifestations or expressions’ and ‘unsustainable tourism that may put at risk the intangible cultural heritage concerned’ (paragraph 102), as well as the need to ‘manage tourism in a sustainable way’ (paragraph 117);
  11. Further recalls paragraph 103 of the Operational Directives and invites the Secretariat to initiate work on a model code of ethics and to report on it to a next session of the Committee;
  12. Further recalls the obligation of States Parties to ensure respect for customary practices governing access to specific aspects of intangible cultural heritage (Article 13 (d) (ii) of the Convention), inter alia in nominations, inventorying and awareness-raising activities, and invites them to address this subject more explicitly in their reports;
  13. Takes note that the Convention emphasizes that intangible cultural heritage provides communities, groups and, in some cases, individuals with a sense of identity and continuity, without invoking the notion of ‘national’ identity that can inhibit the inclusion and recognition of the intangible cultural heritage associated with the diverse communities found on the territories of the respective States Parties;
  14. Takes further note of the diversity of gender and generational roles and responsibilities implicated in the practice of intangible cultural heritage and further encourages States Parties to give greater attention throughout their reports to the gender aspects of intangible cultural heritage and its safeguarding, and to the contributions of youth to the practice and transmission of intangible cultural heritage.

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