The Sharjah Book Authority (SBA) has concluded its participation at the 45th edition of the London Book Fair (LBF 2016) – the world's biggest publishing trade fair – on Thursday. The authority’s presence at the event formed part of its efforts to attract international publishing houses to the emirate of Sharjah and the UAE.
SBA participated in the fair with a special stand showcasing its leading initiatives and events, most notably the Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF), Sharjah Children's Reading Festival, Sharjah Exhibition for Children Books’ Illustrations and SIBF's Translation Grant Fund. The authority also made use of the event to highlight the annual joint conference it organises in collaboration with the American Library Association (ALA) and the SBA annual awards for authors, illustrators and publishers.
H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, Abdul Rahman Ghanem Al Mutaiwee, UAE Ambassador to UK, Saeed Al Shamsi, UAE Ambassador to Ireland, Emirati, author Mohammed Ahmed Al Murr and a number of officials and diplomatic figures visited SBA's stand during the three days of the literary fair.
Ahmed bin Rakkad Al Ameri, Chairman of SBA said; "The London Book Fair is one of the most important book exhibitions in the world. Its status as the largest global marketplace for rights negotiation between publishers, experts and agents for copyrights and translation makes it a compass that provides a detailed picture of the current landscape of the publishing industry, as well as an accurate forecaster on the challenges surrounding it and its associated developments."
Al Ameri underlined that SBA made the most of its participation at LBF 2016 by promoting the emirate of Sharjah and highlighting the leading events it organises for readers, authors, illustrators, publishers and all those who are interested in the book industry. He highlighted the facilities provided by SBA to publishing houses, as well as to printing and distribution agencies. "Sharjah strives to become the regional publishing capital by attracting professionals in the publishing industry from all around the globe," he noted.
On the sidelines of its participation at LBF 2016, the SBA delegation held a series of meetings with publishers and representatives of publishing agencies where they discussed possible ways of enhancing cooperation and participation in events organised by various parties. SBA welcomed all efforts that aim to develop cross-cultural communication between Europe and the Arab world by improving the publishing industry and the translation of books, the latter of which contributes to achieving convergence.
SBA also co-sponsored the 31st edition of the International Publishers Conference, which took place in London from April 9-12 as an important sideline activity for LBF 2016. The four-day conference brought together 600 publishers from around the world to discuss a range of publishing-related topics and the latest developments in the industry, with SBA’s support of the event part of its programme to develop the international publishing industry.
SBA sponsored the participation of 19 Emirati and Arab publishers at LBF 2016 in collaboration with the Arab Publishers Association and the Emirates Publishers Association. This activity was in-line with Sharjah's commitment to supporting professionals in the Arab publishing industry by enabling them to participate in international fairs and events. Through such sponsorship arrangements SBA aims to facilitate and encourage the exchange of experiences and best practices in the field in order to achieve further progress in the region's publishing sector.