VIENTIANE, Nov. 20 (Xinhua) -- The World Heritage Committee of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has presented Laos with a certificate confirming the inscription of the Plain of Jars as Laos' third World Heritage Site.
The certificate was presented to Bosengkham Vongdara, a special envoy of the Lao government, at the Forum of Ministers of Culture in the framework of the 40th session of the UNESCO General Conference held at UNESCO headquarters in Paris.
"Our basic concept is preservation for sustainable development and development for effective preservation, so that we preserve our national identity and it becomes more and more popular among the multi-ethnic people," said Bosengkham at the certificate presentation ceremony.
"Furthermore, our policy is to develop and promote cultural tourism, natural eco-tourism and historical tourism by preserving and opening up our cultural and historical sites. Our policy and concept is to develop sustainable tourism by preserving and developing our national culture and our rich nature for the next generation," he added.
The Plain of Jars, formally called the Megalithic Jar Sites, was officially inscribed on the World Heritage List at a meeting of the World Heritage Committee held in Baku, Azerbaijan, on July 10, 2019.
The Plain of Jars, located on a plateau in Xieng Khuang province, some 180 km northeast of capital Vientiane, is named for the more than 2,100 tubular-shaped megalithic stone jars that are believed to have been used for funerary practices in the Iron Age, according to UNESCO.
The Lao government will hold a special event to mark the listing of the Plain of Jars as a world heritage site during the opening ceremony of the National Games in Xieng Khuang province in 2020, local daily Vientiane Times on Wednesday quoted Director General of the Heritage Department, Lao Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism, Thongbay Phothisane, as saying on Tuesday.
The province will improve infrastructure, especially roads, to ensure visitor safety, Xieng Khuang provincial Governor Bounton Chanthaphone said.
Provincial authorities will seek investment by Lao and foreign businesses in the construction of hotels, guesthouses, restaurants and entertainment venues.
The Plain of Jars, the popular and symbolic tourist attraction, is Laos' third World Heritage Site, following Luang Prabang in 1995 and Vat Phou Champasak in 2001.
Visitors can enjoy outings to hot springs, caves and old temples of historical and cultural significance.
More than 144,000 people visited Xieng Khuang in 2018, according to the official.