Provincial officials said they believe the DMZ has an "outstanding universal value" required for the UNESCO Natural Heritage, as well as a sufficient value for the UNESCO Cultural Heritage.
The Gyeonggi government will also consider applying for the listing of the DMZ as a "world mixed heritage," which is not an official term yet.
To the end, the government has earmarked a budget of 400 million won ($360,000) to conduct extensive research on the ecology of the DMZ this and next year. It will also seek cooperation with the central government ministries and agencies, and Gangwon Province, which also borders the North.
In addition, the Gyeonggi government will seek cooperation with North Korea in its UNESCO heritage bid for the DMZ. It held a consultation with the Cultural Heritage Administration in November last year and attended various DMZ-related forums and conferences on its ecological environment.
Gyeonggi officials said a successful inclusion of the DMZ in the UNESCO heritage list will further contribute to promoting inter-Korean peace and offer an educational venue on the natural ecological environment.