SARAJEVO/ŠIPOVO, September 12 (FENA) – The fact that the Janj Primeval Forest Reserve is the first natural asset in BiH to be included in the UNESCO World Heritage List represents a certain level of prestige that we believe is due to all those who participated in its preservation. It is of great importance to us and we hope that it will open some new windows into the world. After all, we are now on the world map, said in a conversation with FENA the director of the Forest Farm “Gorica” Šipovo, which operates under the public company Forests of the Entity of RS, Jovo Dakić.
Dakić points out that the primeval forest was taken care of in its own way not only by those who were directly in charge of its protection but also by the surrounding population. The trees have been preserved, and it is interesting that there were no fires in the forest.
“We did not create this old-growth forest. We inherited it, and today we have it under UNESCO’s protection. It is the obligation of this generation to leave it completely preserved for the generations to come and we hope that those future generations will do the same.
As one of the most important characteristics of the Janj primeval forest, Dakić points out that it is originally intact, and that no human actions are allowed there in terms of any change. The presence of people for scientific research, education and tourism is possible, but all under strict supervision.
The director of the Forest Farm “Gorica”, speaking about the expectations after the inclusion on the UNESCO List, says that the responsibility of both the manager and the population will be even greater. He emphasizes that they are in negotiations with the members of the UNESCO team about the benefits, but also the obligations.
“We expect that our obligations will be significantly higher because it is now both global and our own heritage. We expect that through some projects we will be able to raise the level of protection of the forest reserve from potential human harmful effects, through protection against forest fires and the like. We hope that we will be able to realize some of our ideas that are in line with UNESCO standards,” he underlined.
The current status of tourism in the Municipality of Šipovo is favorable, given that this area has numerous tourist resources, among which the most attractive are the Janj islands, the sources of the Pliva River, Vagan cave, etc.
The consequences of the COVID 19 pandemic have been felt here as well in terms of the reduced number of visitors from abroad, while domestic guests continued to come.
In July, the UNESCO World Heritage Committee made a decision declaring the Janj primeval forest near Šipovo a natural asset of world importance within the expansion of the organization’s World Heritage Site.
The natural asset of world importance “Primitive beech forests of the Carpathians and other regions of Europe” has been expanded with sites from six other countries signatories to the UNESCO Convention for the Protection of Natural and Cultural Heritage from the Czech Republic, France, North Macedonia, Poland, Switzerland and Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Among the 15 new protected areas within that serial nomination is the Janj primeval forest near Šipovo.
The Janj forest has become the first natural asset from Bosnia and Herzegovina that has been inscribed on this prestigious World Heritage List. It is a primeval forest that is a strict nature reserve, with an area of 295 hectares, of which 58 hectares have been set aside in which the use of forests and any human activity is prohibited.
Visits to the rainforest as a protected area can be realized with the obligatory presence of a professional guide. All information about this natural asset and the ways to visit the primeval forest can be found at: www.prasumajanj.com.