Two significant Memoranda of Understanding have been agreed in 2002 between AusHeritage and the ASEAN Committee on Culture and Information (ASEAN-COCI) and with the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH). The latter was signed by Vinod Daniel, AusHeritage Chairman and S.K. Mishra, the Vice-Chairman of INTACH at a formal ceremony in New Delhi, India on 22 April 2002 in the presence of the Hon. Alexander Downer, Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs. The MOU with ASEAN-COCI was initialed in Yangon, Myanmar on 31 July during the 4th Meeting of ASEAN-COCI’s Subcommittee on Culture by Vinod Daniel and by Tran Chien Thang, Chairman of ASEAN-COCI.
These agreements follow the 1999 Memorandum of Understanding between the Government of Indonesia and the Government of Australia in which AusHeritage is the Australian implementing entity. This MOU provides for cooperation in a broad range of activities in the fields of conservation and management of cultural heritage
The MOU with INTACH provides for the undertaking of joint projects and activities to help protect, preserve and promote cultural heritage in India, including conferences, seminars, symposia and workshops, the exchange of expertise, the development, testing and promotion of a range of appropriate standards and guidelines, the development of infrastructure, reciprocal attendance at official meetings, and the exploration of other areas of potential collaboration and advice.
The objective of the MOU with ASEAN-COCI is to enhance cooperation in the field of protection, preservation, management and promotion of cultural heritage of ASEAN. The areas of cooperation include the undertaking of projects and activities to help protect, preserve, promote and manage the cultural heritage of ASEAN, especially in capacity building, awareness raising and advocacy. Both parties shall:
- encourage joint activities, including conferences, seminars, symposia and workshops on the protection, preservation, promotion and management of cultural heritage.
- encourage the exchange of expertise and joint activities in the research, preservation, conservation, promotion and management of cultural heritage – exchange programs in the field shall be encouraged.
- cooperate on the development, testing and promotion of a range of appropriate standards and guidelines.
- cooperate on the development and implementation of key tools such as websites, including the development and upgrade of the ASEAN Cultural Heritage Information Network portal site.
- encourage reciprocal attendance at meetings covered by the MOU.
- encourage the exploration of other areas of potential collaboration and advice.
These three MOUs are a testimony to the strengths of AusHeritage’s relationships with these key regional partners and provide an excellent platform to facilitate high-level cooperation and mutual interests in enhancing cultural heritage management capabilities in South and South East Asia