London, April 13, 2018
The Emirates Publishers Association (EPA) interacted with some of the publishing world’s most influential figures during its first standalone participation at the London Book Fair, resulting in potential international partnerships and business opportunities.
Leading the EPA delegation at the association’s debut stand, Executive Director, Rashid Al Kous, stressed the importance for Emirati publishers to be part of international events, and the value of cultural exchange in terms of both knowledge sharing and business collaboration.
During the course of the 47th edition of the event, which concluded yesterday (Thursday) at London Olympia, meetings with several leading international publishers discussed the advantages of working with Emirati publishing houses, the creation of programmes for the publishers and the prospect of new opportunities to support each other’s’ objectives and business goals within the nation’s emerging publishing industry.
Rashid Al Kous said: “This was an excellent platform for UAE publishers to reinforce their standing as an important Arab publishing resource, with significant opportunities for joint ventures. More than 25,000 publishing professionals attended the event and we met with some of the leading decision-makers in the industry to either introduce ourselves or discuss developing our relationships even further.
“Our participation in London provided us with two key opportunities; firstly, as a business prospect to promote the benefits of working with UAE publishers and outline the incentives and facilities they have to offer; and secondly to strengthen the presence of the UAE in international forums to exchange cultural understanding in keeping with the directives of His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council Ruler of Sharjah.”
Reinforcing its commitment to the UAE publishing industry, the National Media Council sponsored the participation of two publishers at the fair, Ali bin Hatem from Thaqafa Publishing and Distribution and Iman bin Chaiba from Sail Publishing.
The EPA provided the exhibition visitors with a publishers guide that contained the best sellers for EPA publishing houses members and in its manifesto ‘A Vision for Transformative Change in the Publishing Industry’ the EPA highlighted some of the most exciting prospects for Emirati publishers in the coming years. This includes becoming the hub of Arabic publishing; improving the legal framework for publishers; increasing diversity and quality of Arabic content; Developing quality Arabic teaching and learning materials; encouraging reading for pleasure; improving distribution and retail; transforming libraries; building national pride and intercultural understanding; developing skills for creative industries; and cultivating artistic talent.
Al Kous said: “Emirates publishing is very much about looking forward and inspiring change from within to promote our professionalism, potential and innate ambition to succeed. The EPA’s primary goals are to unite, mentor and advance our members in the global publishing industry and to enhance understanding with other communities and societies through cultural collaboration.”
Founded in 2009 and supported by Sheikha Bodour bint Sultan Al Qasimi, the EPA is dedicated to serving and developing the publishing sector in the UAE and advancing the role of Emirati publishers through training and mentorship programmes. The association represents the interests of professionals in the UAE’s publishing industry and improves the conditions of the profession and its related laws in coordination with concerned authorities locally and internationally.