Abu Dhabi book fair opens
Abu Dhabi, March 11, 2008
The 18th annual Abu Dhabi International Book Fair opened on Tuesday at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (Adnec), with around 600,000 titles from 400 global publishers on display.
The international book fair, being held under the patronage of Sheikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, will run until March 16.
Organised by Kitab, a joint venture between the Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture and Heritage and the Frankfurt Book Fair, the event aims to further consolidate the local publishing industry, currently estimated to be between Dh8 billion to Dh10 billion ($2.17 billion to $2.7 billion) and growing at 15 to 20 per cent annually.
It has been an important networking and trade venue for the rapidly growing publishing and media industries in the Middle East, Kitab officials said.
The book fair likewise seeks to sustain the momentum generated by the 2007 edition, which secured over Dh30 million in book sales.
Books in Arabic, English, Indian, French, German, Chinese, and several other languages will be exhibited during the Fair, which will occupy 25 per cent more floor space compared to the 2007 event.
The second annual Sheikh Zayed Book Award will also be presented during the six-day exhibition, conferring Dh7 million in prizes to writers, intellectuals, publishers and aspiring authors whose works celebrate the cultural, literary and social life of the Arab World.
The winner and selected authors who joined the first International Prize for Arab Fiction will be recognized on the second and third day.
Ahmad Humaid Al Mazrouie, Adnec managing director, said thousands of publishers, prominent literary figures and international guests had attended the event last year.
'We expect the same high-level reception this year as we affirm the fair’s key role in attaining the full potential of the Arab publishing industry and promoting cultural and intellectual exchange to and from the Arab World. This event enables Abu Dhabi to enhance its role as a destination for converging culture and business and promoting social growth and harmony,” he noted.
The book fair will showcase English translations of several classic and modern Arabic literature, as well as translations of English literary works into Arabic.
Abu Dhabi serves as an ideal venue for the event as it presently hosts the region’s most comprehensive bilingual catalogue of publishing industry professionals and contacts and has accumulated numerous translated Arabic literary works.-TradeArabia News Service