The 6th Taihe Forum opened at the Palace Museum in Beijing on Oct 16, with the theme of “International Exchange, Cooperation and Sharing of cultural relics protection”. Minister of Culture and Tourism Hu Heping attended the opening ceremony and delivered a speech. Lina Mendoni, Minister of Culture of Greece; Wang Xudong, Director of the Palace Museum; Kalpyris, Ambassador of Greece to China; Kabuljon Sabirov, First Deputy Director of the Cultural Heritage Agency of Uzbekistan. Participants included leaders of international organizations such as the International Research Center for the Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Relics, the International Council of Museums, the International Council on Monuments and Sites, the International Association for the Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Relics, and the European Organization for Standardization Technical Committee on the Conservation of Cultural Heritage, and scholars from China, Egypt, France, Greece, Italy, Japan, Portugal and other national cultural institutions, research institutes, standardization institutions and universities attended the opening ceremony.
Hu Heping said in his speech that carrying splendid civilizations, cultural relics inherited history and culture and witnessed the exchanges and mutual learning of human civilizations and their shared destiny. To protect cultural relics is to protect our ever-growing cultural roots and our spiritual home. Chinese government attaches great importance to the protection and inheritance of cultural relics and cultural heritage, giving priority to protection and inheritance, and promoting high-quality development of cultural relics. The Ministry of Culture and Tourism and the State Administration of Cultural Heritage are willing to join hands with all parties to implement the Global Civilization Initiative, foster the protection and utilization of cultural relics, archaeological excavations, research and interpretation, exhibition, dissemination and promotion. Within the framework of the bilateral field, UNESCO, the International Council on Monuments and Sites, the International Association for the Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Relics and the Asian Cultural Heritage Conservation Alliance, China is committed to strengthening dialogue and exchanges, deepening practical cooperation, ensuring the success of the Taihe Forum and the Taihe Scholars Program. New and greater contributions should be made to protect our common cultural heritage of mankind at a higher level, promote of international exchanges and cooperation on cultural heritage, and build of a community with a shared future for mankind.
Wang Xudong said in his speech that the forum aims to provide a platform for international exchanges and cooperation in the field of cultural heritage for experts and scholars from across the world, and provide possible ways for future communication and joint construction. As the protection and management institution of the Forbidden City, a treasure house of Chinese culture, the Palace Museum is willing to work with Chinese and foreign cultural heritage practitioners to deeply implement the Global Civilization Initiative, continue to strengthen international exchanges, carry out extensive international cooperation, inherit and carry forward human civilization, promote exchanges and mutual learning among civilizations, and contribute to the development and progress of human civilization.
After the opening ceremony, Wang Xudong, Lina Mendoni and John Robbins, President of the International Center for Cultural Heritage Conservation and Restoration, delivered keynote speeches on “Strengthening International Cooperation and Sharing to Promote Exchanges and Mutual Learning”, “Strengthening the Resilience of Cultural Heritage Sites to Climate Change: Current Situation, Prospects and Challenges” and “The Imperative Role of International Organizations in Protecting cultural heritage”.
The forum, co-sponsored by the Palace Museum, the Beijing Foundation for the Protection of Palace Museum Relics and the China Forbidden City Society, was expected to continue until Oct 17th. During this period, there were five academic presentations, during which a total of 17 guests from home and abroad discussed the important role of international organizations in promoting the development of cultural heritage protection from the perspectives of institutional construction, personnel training and academic achievements. Through cases of bilateral or multilateral international cooperation projects promoting large-scale cultural heritage protection, they shed light on the significance of formulating international norms, standards for the protecting cultural relics in developing cultural relics protection throughout the world. At the same time, the Forum also carried out international exchanges and dialogues on the topics of “The Role of International Organizations in Cultural Heritage Protection”, “The Role of Bilateral or Multilateral International Cooperation Projects in Protecting Cultural Heritage” and “The Trend of Standardization of Cultural Heritage Protection”.