China News Service, Beijing, August 7 (Xu Jing) 2022 marks the 50th anniversary of UNESCO's adoption of the "Convention on the Protection of World Cultural and Natural Heritage", and it is also a critical year for Beijing's central axis to apply for the World Heritage List.

Li Qun, deputy minister of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism and director of the State Administration of Cultural Heritage, said on the 7th that the party group of the State Administration of Cultural Heritage has recently researched and confirmed that the "Beijing Central Axis" is recommended as China's 2024 World Cultural Heritage application project.

  Today, how do countries around the world promote the revitalization and utilization of heritage and sustainable development?

How to promote the vitality of historical and cultural cities?

At the 2022 "Beijing Historical and Cultural City Protection Dialogue" held on the 7th, more than 20 domestic and foreign experts discussed the protection of world cultural heritage, providing useful reference for Beijing's central axis application.

  "The central axis tells the story of a Chinese civilization." Lv Zhou, head of the Beijing Central axis application text compilation team and director of the National Heritage Center of Tsinghua University, introduced that the heritage components of the central axis include 3 world heritage sites and 11 national key sites. Cultural relics protection units, 2 municipal cultural relics protection units, and 2 unclassified immovable cultural relics.

The central axis not only reflects the continuous inheritance of five thousand years of Chinese culture, but also reflects the formation process of China's pluralistic unity pattern, as well as the aesthetic concept in traditional culture.

  During the dialogue, Helen Jarvis, an advisor to the Cambodian government and an expert on Angkor heritage and cultural heritage protection, introduced the historical city of Angkor in Cambodia.

In 1992, the Angkor Wat Archaeological Park was included in the World Heritage List, and in the same year it was included in the World Heritage List in Danger.

Stabilizing collapsed buildings, repairing overgrown roads, clearing mines and unexploded ordnance... Conserving relics presents many challenges.

With the launch of the International Action to Save Angkor Monuments, the above problems were successfully resolved.

At the 28th session of the World Heritage Committee held in Suzhou in 2004, the World Heritage Committee removed Angkor Wat from the List of World Heritage in Danger.

  She introduced that today some local residents of Angkor are still engaged in traditional rituals, customs and arts and crafts, receiving millions of tourists every year.

In 2019, tourism accounted for 18.7% of Cambodia’s GDP, with a large portion concentrated in the country’s historical cities and other cultural and natural heritage sites.

The word "heritage" has always been of great significance in Cambodia because of the emotional and physical role played by heritage.

  How to protect the world heritage and historical cities in the changing times?

Judd Thabot, president of the Association of Architects and Engineers of the Arab States, said specific conservation policies and practices for historic cities should be tailored to local conditions.

He introduced that the "World Heritage List" currently includes 1,154 heritage sites, of which urban heritage is the largest single category, accounting for more than 30%.

Cities such as Cairo in Egypt, Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, Quebec in Canada, and Suzhou in China are all inscribed on the World Heritage List with similar criteria, but it is difficult to assess heritage value without considering their specific context.

  He mentioned that historical cities are witnesses to the development of human civilization and always reflect people's changing needs with the times.

Different cultures are rooted in specific expressions, and their values, expressions and transmissions vary from culture to culture.

Therefore, there is no fixed standard for judging the value of heritage, and judging in the cultural context to which it belongs is an inevitable requirement of respecting culture.

  In the process of cultural heritage protection, as the largest and most complete ancient palace complex in the world, the authenticity and integrity protection of the Forbidden City has always been a difficult problem.

Shan Jixiang, president of the Academy of the Palace Museum and president of the Chinese Society of Cultural Relics, introduced that after years of environmental improvement and overall repair and protection, many buildings in the Palace Museum that once "stopped the audience" have been turned into exhibition hall exhibition areas: the "Transformation" Sculpture Hall of Cining Palace, Donghuamen has become an ancient building museum, Shenwumen has opened an exhibition hall, Duanmen has been built into a digital museum, and the big stage that has not performed for more than 100 years is playing music again... Nowadays, it is not enough to visit the Forbidden City in two or three hours.