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UNESCO: United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization




  • Ping Yao : Viejo Cathedral, remains, Hispanic style, seaboard scenery, sea

Panama became a UNESCO Member State on January 10, 1950. The country is covered by the UNESCO Office San José, in Costa Rica.

In May 2003, Panama, which boasts the most important inter-oceanic canal in the world along with an extremely rich underwater heritage, was the first country to ratify the UNESCO Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage.

In recognition of “the strategic collaboration with Panama, which has enabled important national programmes and projects to be carried out,” Panama’s Permanent Delegation awarded in July 2004 the Order of Vasco Nuńéz de Balboa to UNESCO Director-General Koďchiro Matsuura. It is the highest distinction foreigners can receive from the Panamanian government.

Panama City’s Water Centre for the Humid Tropics of Latin America and the Caribbean (CATHALAC), which promotes appropriate management of water resources, operates under the auspices of UNESCO.

UNESCO’s Director-General, Koďchiro Matsuura, visited Panama in March 2004.

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