Abu Dhabi Arabic Language Centre’s Publishing Industry Forum explores sector’s future, prospects for growth

ABU DHABI, 30th August, 2022 (WAM) -- The Abu Dhabi Arabic Language Centre (ALC) organised the inaugural Publishing Industry Forum, an event for the Emirates Publishers Association, at the St. Regis Abu Dhabi.

The forum aimed to support the promotion of the Arabic language and efforts to create Arabic content. It showcased local and international ALC publishing projects and its initiatives to support Emirati publishers.

The event was attended by Dr. Ali bin Tamim, Chairman of the ALC, Saeed Hamdan Al Tunaiji, Acting Executive Director of the ALC, and Rashid Al Kous, Executive Director of the Emirates Publishers Association, along with 50 Emirati publishers specialising in children’s and young adult literature, e-book and audiobook publishers, literary agencies, copyright trade professionals, and translators, in addition to representatives from the ALC’s various departments.

Al Tunaiji said, "The publishing sector has faced many challenges in recent years, requiring stakeholders and relevant authorities to mobilise efforts and clearly outline the industry’s future. The Abu Dhabi Arabic Language Centre is committed to developing systems for the publishing sector at the local and international levels, providing support to writers and publishers and promoting their work across global markets. The Publishing Industry Forum with the Emirates Publishers Association is a continuation of these efforts, helping to strengthen communication between industry players so that stakeholders can remain on top of developments and address any challenges that may arise."

Rashid Al Kous said, "This forum has given the global community of publishers a meaningful new opportunity to present recommendations which they believe will fuel necessary efforts for modern technology uptake to continue growing and advancing our industry. The forum’s participants from our region can harness and customise the recommendations to benefit their businesses while diversifying their content into e-book and audiobook formats, particularly in the children’s and young adult genres, since these have come up as central discussion themes along with translations, book marketing, fairs and festivals.

"The Arabic language will always be the primary medium for transmitting our deep-rooted history and cultural identity while also serving as a protector of our identity for generations to come. Therefore, the role that Emirati and Arab publishers play in achieving these goals cannot be overstated. Through their contributions, they are turning the local and regional publishing industry into an inclusive cultural ecosystem that continually promotes learning among Arab readers in their mother tongue."

The forum assessed the current state of the Emirati publishing industry and the challenges it faces, shedding light on publishers’ aspirations and their proposed solutions to sector-wide issues. The event highlighted the role of book fairs and their impact on the industry, with attendees exploring ways to revamp the professional programme for the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair 2023 and discussing Al Dhafra Book Fair’s prospects for development.

Other topics of discussion included modern marketing mechanisms and various channels for print, digital, and audio publications. The forum also spotlighted the outcomes of the first International Congress of Arabic Publishing and Creative Industries, as well as the successes of the ALC’s regular participation at various international book fairs.