YANGON, July 2 (Xinhua) -- Myanmar is making efforts to put Mrauk U, a region in western Rakhine state with historical cultural evidences, on the list of world heritage sites of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
The ancient Mrauk U temple zone will be the subject of a bid to UNESCO world heritage status and a team of experts has been set to begin survey for drafting the application.
A draft nomination to include Mrauk U region on the world heritage list will be submitted in September 2018 and a final submission will be made by January 2019.
Researchers noted that more than 90 percent of historical evidences are in line with what was seen on the ground, adding that if the region becomes a world heritage site, it will be a historical honor that the Rakhine state can proudly proclaim.
Researchers also said once the region is inscribed on the list, it will become fully developed within 10 years.
Meanwhile, a motion has been submitted to the Rakhine state parliament to implement a new Mrauk U town project which will be debated.
Stressing the need to preserve and develop Mrauk U, the Department of Archaeology and National Museum also said if a new Mrauk U town project is implemented, it will resolve the matter of squatters living in Mrauk U cultural area.
Moreover, construction of a new airport is underway in Mrauk U as part of the government's efforts to develop tourism in the region.
The construction of the new Mrauk U airfield, which started on the eastern side of the city along the Sittway-Yangon highway near Nankyar village in 2015, is scheduled to be completed in 2021.
The original Mrauk U airport was located in an archaeological zone, while the new one is away from the zone.
Upon completion of the new Mrauk U airport, tourist arrivals in the region are expected to increase.
Rakhine state, one of Myanmar's least-developed ethnic states, holds promise as a tourist haven on account of its long coastline and wilderness.
Myanmar's three ancient Pyu cities-- Hanlin, Beikthano and Sri Kestra, respectively located in Sagaing, Magway and Bago regions, were listed as world heritage of Myanmar in 2014 for the first time and archaeological excavation of the three Myanmar ancient cities continued for tourism development under a cultural heritage preservation plan.