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Visit to MLR, P.R.C. by Experts from the GGN Bureau

Source: Published:Mar 11,2009

On March 3, Dr. Patrick Mc Keever and Prof. Ibrahim Komoo from the Global Geoparks Network Bureau arrived in Beijing for a meeting with relevant officials from the Ministry of Land and Resources (MLR), P.R.C and the Global Geoparks Network (GGN) Office. Among the topics discussed where how to improve individual geoparks contributions to the further development of the GGN, how to advance the work of the newly-created Asia-Pacific Geoheritage and Geopark Network (APGGN) and the programme for several significant activities and events of the GGN that will happen this year.

These two experts discussed at length with their Chinese colleagues, the current state of GGN development and the challenges it faces while acknowledging China’s important and valuable contributions to GGN over the last 5 years. They continued that the establishment of regional geopark networks, similar to European Geoparks Network (EGN), across the world could greatly advance the work of the GGN. The deputy director-general of the Department of Geological Environment, MLR, Miss Chen Xiaoning, agreed with this view and encouraged Prof. Komoo to introduce preparations for the operation of the new APGGN. In addition, plans for the evaluation of new Chinese candidates to the GGN, the revalidation of existing members of the GGN and the arrangements for the International Symposium on Geoparks, to be held in the last ten-days of August, were talked over.

The experts gave respective academic reports of geoparks to the Chinese Academy of Geological Scienes in Beijing on March 5. Dr. McKeever’s report emphasized the precise nature of the geopark concept, the GGN and it’s development including the development of EGN. Prof. Komoo explained such nouns as geoheritage, geosite, geotop and geopark from the academic perspective, presenting his own experience in geopark investigation. As a key player in the Malaysian geopark movement, he gave a presentation on research, construction, management and other conditions of geoheritage in the Langkawi Global Geopark - Malaysia, detailing the substantial development of tourism brought by the foundation of the Geopark.