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‘Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development’ and ‘Emirates Publishers Association’ Explore Ways to Develop UAE’s Publishing Sector




Posted 10 months ago in News


The ‘Ministry of Culture and Community Development’ and the ‘Emirates Publishers Association’ (EPA) held a meeting yesterday (Sunday) to discuss the reality of the publishing sector in the UAE and the progress achieved in the industry.

Held at Al Qasba, the meeting comes as part of EPA’s concerted efforts to introduce new methods that enhance opportunities to develop the publishing industry in the UAE and to support professionals in this vital sector.

The meeting was attended by Bodour bint Sultan Al Qasimi, Founder and President of the EPA and HE Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development. Also participating were representatives from the EPA, including Vice President Ali Al Shaali; Treasurer Mohammed bin Dakhin; Secretary Ali Bin Hatem, Board Member Nooh Al Hammadi and Executive Director Rashid Al Kous.

Representatives from the MoC attending included Director of the Minister’s Office Lubna Al Gergawi; Personal Consultant Ruba Al Hassan, and Director of the Knowledge Content Department Fatima Al Nassour.

During the meeting, the two sides discussed ways of strengthening mutual cooperation and touched on the recent procedures taken by the ministry to grant the International Serial Book Number (ISBN). The possible ways to protect copyright and effectively fight against piracy were also addressed.

The EPA and the ministry representatives also explored ways to support libraries with high quality Arabic content and examined the need to launch national campaigns to promote parents’ awareness about the importance of reading for them and their children, with the aim being to entrench reading as a valued community practice.

“The UAE is currently witnessing a comprehensive cultural and literary renaissance, as evidenced by the rich literary experience offered by Sharjah International Book Fair where the love for the written word is expressed and celebrated. And as we are still celebrating the announcement of Sharjah as the World Book Capital for the year 2019, the rapid and substantial growth of the cultural scene must be met with unique developments in the publishing industry and this is exactly what we are working towards, the harnessing of our full potential and resources to serve the publishing sector and its professionals,” said Bodour Al Qasimi.

“Holding this meeting with our partners from the Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development comes in line with the strategy of the EPA, which pays great attention to its collaboration with influential bodies in the publishing industry, especially government entities that have a close association with the sector and have a direct impact on the publishing movement. As a result of this meeting, we look forward to launching a number of pilot programmes and projects that serve the EPA’s member publishers,” Bodour Al Qasimi emphasised.

Bodour Al Qasimi concluded by appreciating the efforts made by the Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development to facilitate the publishing movement and to drive it to wider horizons. She also lauded the ministry’s role in boosting the cultural movement in the country.

For her part HE Al Kaabi expressed her delight over the naming of Sharjah by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) as the World Book Capital 2019. “Sharjah receiving the World Book Capital 2019 title embodies the prestigious stature of books in the UAE and the great attention enjoyed thanks to the UAE Government’s support for initiatives and projects that aim to strengthen the presence of books in the Emirati society. Sharjah was able to secure this honour as a result of the integrated cultural project that was launched by His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council Ruler of Sharjah. This great achievement, which is a source of pride for all Emiratis and Arabs, is the culmination of these concerted efforts,” she stressed.

Al Kaabi commended the EPA’s work to develop the publishing sector and cultural arena in the UAE, underscoring the MoC is ready to collaborate with the EPA to launch joint projects that serve the publishing sector and those engaged in it. She unveiled that the MoC will organise a crash course for publishers in collaboration with the EPA to boost the local publishing sector.

The meeting resulted with a range of recommendations, notably the launch of a project to develop the libraries sector, which will support public libraries with books published by EPA members, as well as the organising of book signing ceremonies for authors and reading sessions at public libraries. The recommendations also included an action plan to provide the MoC pavilion at local and international cultural events with titles from publishers who are EPA members.

Founded in 2009 under an initiative by Bodour bint Sultan Al Qasimi, the EPA has led efforts to advance the publishing industry in the UAE. The organisation is dedicated to serving and developing the publishing sector in the UAE and to advancing the role of Emirati publishers through training and mentorship programmes. The EPA represents the interests of professionals in the UAE’s publishing industry by working on furthering their rights and has a remit to improve the conditions of the profession and its related laws in coordination with concerned authorities locally and internationally.



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