The Rosia Montana mining landscape was included on Tuesday on the World Heritage List, as well as in the List of World Heritage in Danger, precisely on the day when Romania celebrated 65 years since joining UNESCO.
The decision , taken by consensus by the World Heritage Committee at its 44th extended session in Fouzhou, China, stirred a wave of enthusiastic reactions in Romania.
Iohannis: Rosia Montana must become a model of heritage capitalization through sustainable development of the area
President Klaus Iohannis welcomed on Tuesday the inclusion of the Rosia Montana historic mining site to the UNESCO World Heritage List.
“I welcome the inclusion of the Rosia Montana mining cultural landscape into the world heritage! Through the combined efforts of the authorities and experts, Rosia Montana must become a model of heritage capitalization through sustainable development of the area,” the head of the state wrote on Facebook.
USR PLUS: Including the Rosia Montana site in the UNESCO World Heritage, huge opportunity for the local community
USR PLUS (Save Romania Union Party of Liberty, Unity and Solidarity alliance) says that including the Rosia Montana site in the UNESCO World Heritage, a decision that was made on Tuesday, represents “a huge opportunity” for the local community, for developing and preserving the heritage.
“A historical day for Romanians! Rosia Montana was included in the UNESCO World Heritage. It is the victory of all who, through their civic involvement, have saved one of the most treasured history of Romanians. Through today’s decision, the local community is receiving a huge opportunity for developing and, at the same time, preserving the heritage. Now it will be much easier to access financing to protecting the heritage and investing in economic activities, which will accentuate the Roman galleries and the mining landscape of the town,” USR PLUS specifies, in a Facebook post.
USR PLUS shows that, according to experts, the ones who recommend entering monuments in the Global Heritage list, the Rosia Montana Cultural Mining Landscape is “one of the most significant, extended, and diverse in the world, dating since Dacia’s Roman occupation (106-127 BC)”. Also, it contains “the most representative example of underground gold mining in the world”.
“Now, all these things are recognized and protected at a global level,” the political formation highlights.
National Heritage Institute: Achievement and beginning of a journey
The listing of the Rosia Montana mining cultural landscape as UNESCO World Heritage site is an achievement and at the same time the beginning of a journey, the National Heritage Institute (INP) states.
“The exceptional universal value of the Rosia Montana mining cultural landscape – the most important, extensive and technically diverse underground mining complex of Roman antiquity, together with the ore exploitation areas, the residential areas, sacred areas, and necropolises – was thus recognized on the basis of the criteria defined by the World Heritage Convention. An idea that has grown and endured in the last two decades – thanks to the national and international scientific community, expert institutions, the local community and the civil society gathered around it and brought by Romania to UNESCO’s attention – receives top validation today, as our country celebrates 65 years since joining the UNESCO Convention,” INP wrote on Facebook.
The INP mentions that the site has also been added to the List of World Heritage in Danger, “thus having both its vulnerability and the need for urgent protection measures recognized.”
“In this regard, international cooperation is encouraged and it is recommendable to invite to Rosia Montana a technical reactive monitoring mission to determine the optimal state of conservation and a program of measures to ensure the site’s removal from the List of World Heritage in Danger. The way for international cooperation thus opens to safeguard a unique cultural resource by capitalizing on its economic potential in connection with the development of cultural and environmental tourism, which accompany the status of world heritage site. (…) It is an achievement and at the same time a beginning of a journey for Romania and all those who understand that the future belongs to solidarity and sustainable development, who do not sacrifice history, knowledge, the spirit of a place, or the perspectives of future generations,” the cited source states.
EnviMin Barna: Cultural value can be used through tourism
Minister of the Environment, Waters and Forestry Tanczos Barna says the inclusion of the Rosia Montana Mining Landscape on the World Heritage List represents an opportunity for the development of tourism in the area.
“It is a recognition of the cultural value that we have; it is a global recognition, it will generate a special global interest for these cultural values, and I hope that it will be a new resource, a new beginning for this area, where (.. .) this cultural value can be capitalised on through tourism, through activities that will produce money in the area,” Barna said on Tuesday on a working visit to Alba County.
He added that the dissatisfied should view this decision as a chance for the locals.
“The presentation of the ‘Rosia Montana’ file was taken up at the governmental level, in the coalition, and we also have the result; it is a positive outcome and we go further with it. (…) To those who are dissatisfied, probably for reasons of economic activity and securing daily living in this region, I tell that this is a new resource that must be used rationally and efficiently, so that we can turn this global recognition of the Roman galleries there into an advantage,” added Barna.
MEP Ciolos: I couldn’t have received a better gift for my birthday
MEP Dacian Ciolos, Save Romania Union – Party of Liberty, Union and Solidarity (USR PLUS) alliance co-chairman, says the inclusion of the site at Rosia Montana in the UNESCO World Heritage List represents “a unique chance to sustainable development.”
“Rosia Montana has become a UNESCO World Heritage Site today. It is great news and there could not have been a better gift to enjoy my birthday. The Rosia Montana community, which I know, have deserved this chance a long time, because the people there, but also other civic organisations in the country have fought for years for this recognition, it is a unique chance for sustainable development, a chance that I hope we can fully exploit. It is the victory of all those who, through their civic involvement, saved one of the most precious treasures of the ancient history of the Romanians, but beyond the prestige of being part of the UNESCO Heritage, it is, first of all, to find economic and social solutions, viable and sustainable, for tourist development. All this, based on the profile of the area, will bring prosperity to the people of the region. Congratulations to all those who believed in this opportunity and who made possible the moment today,” Ciolos wrote on Tuesday on Facebook.
Deputy PM Barna: There is a huge chance for heritage development and heritage conservation
Deputy Prime Minister Dan Barna also expressed joy that the site “has finally gained international recognition.”
“We have been fighting for years to protect the history and environment of Rosia Montana, and today we received great news. We have actively supported the Rosia Montana file at UNESCO from the beginning and I am glad that this site has managed to finally achieve international recognition. There is a huge chance for heritage development and – at the same time – heritage conservation. Now it will be much easier to access funding for heritage protection and investment in economic activities that enhance Roman galleries and the local mining landscape. (…) Rosia Montana is a major victory of the new political generation,” Barna also wrote on Facebook.
Weber: A reason for national pride, a reason for responsibility
The inclusion of Rosia Montana on the UNESCO World Heritage List is a reason for national pride, but certainly also a reason for responsibility, says MP Mihai Weber, chairman of the Joint Standing Committee of the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate on UNESCO.
“Saving the national heritage is a duty we have to future generations and that, as I have always claimed, must not have a political colour,” Weber said in a press statement released on Tuesday.
The Rosia Montana Mining Landscape made it to the World Heritage List on Tuesday, as decided by the World Heritage Committee, which met in its 44th session on July 27, the 65th anniversary of Romania joining UNESCO.
Weber adds that the system of Roman galleries, along with other cultural, historical and natural assets are thus recognised for their exceptional value. Independent UNESCO experts have recommended, since 2019, that the site be inscribed on both the World Heritage List and the List of World Heritage in Danger.
The MP mentions that under a Statement of Outstanding Universal Value, UNESCO established that Rosia Montana is the largest and most technically diverse Roman gold underground mining complex currently known in the world. The Rosia Montana Mining Landscape is the most important example of gold mining from the Roman period, which demonstrates the use of innovative techniques developed by skilled miners, a pioneer work in the technical history of mining.
“The local administrations, together with officials of the relevant ministries have a mission, more than ever before, to solve some of the problems that still exist at Rosia Montana. The debates that we had on this subject at the meetings of the Joint Standing Committee of the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate on UNESCO revealed that Rosia Montana remains a challenge: a balanced and responsible approach is needed, combining the need to safeguard the inherited cultural heritage with the economic aspects signalled by the local community. Protecting and promoting the cultural landscape and responsible mining are two components that are not excluded and for which there are certainly administrative solutions,” said the chairman of the Joint Standing Committee of the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate on UNESCO.
Ambassador Miculescu: As we anticipated, we have a double celebration today
Romania’s ambassador to UNESCO Simona Miculescu says that the inclusion of the Rosia Montana Mining Landscape on the World Heritage List on the very day when Romania celebrates 65 years since joining this organisation is a double celebration.
“As we anticipated, we have a double celebration today! The Rosia Montana mining landscape was included today on the World Heritage List, as well as in the List of World Heritage in Danger, precisely on the day when Romania celebrates 65 years since joining UNESCO! Wonderful coincidence! What an exciting and beautiful day! We thank all those who have contributed, over the years, to this double celebration! We also thank all those who celebrate with us today! We will continue to promote Romania’s interests with passion and devotion. In this prestigious international arena we will try to score increasingly more wins!,” Miculescu wrote on Facebook.
Compiled from Agerpres