People, Travel

Arak Bazaar Seeking World Heritage Status

Arak Bazaar Seeking World Heritage StatusArak Bazaar Seeking World Heritage Status

Inscribing Arak’s historical bazaar on UNESCO’s World Heritage List is on the agenda of Iran’s Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization, according to the organization’s deputy for handicrafts.

During his visit to the ancient bazaar in Arak, Markazi Province, Mohammad Hassan Talebiyan told reporters that UNESCO-listed sites receive considerable attention from the global community, which helps secure funds to preserve them, Borna News Agency reported.

“World heritage status also helps attract tourists, which creates jobs and helps the economy,” he said.

The official called for greater cooperation of bazaar’s shopkeepers and the public to ensure the site receives global recognition, since UNESCO’s experts pay special attention to how a site is managed before recommending it for inscription.

Talebiyan said repurposing some parts of the bazaar and changing its historical design will make the site’s inscription difficult.

He pointed to Tabriz Historical Bazaar Complex—one of Iran’s 19 world heritage sites—as an example of successful cooperation between the shopkeepers and ICHHTO.

Talebiyan said UNESCO’s experts will travel to Iran in two weeks to evaluate 11 qanats—underground aqueducts such as Arak’s Ebrahimabad Qanat—to submit a report on whether they should be included on UNESCO’s Tentative List.