Sharjah: The Emirates Publishers Association (EPA) held a meeting with its member publishers to prepare a clear strategy for improving the UAE’s publishing industry and advance the role of publishing industry professionals.
Held as one in a series of meetings, the session was moderated by EPA vice-president Ali Al Sha’ali. It examined a range of ideas and proposals that would contribute to developing the publishing sector in the nation in a way that will be conducive to the birth of such creative and intellectual works that will boost the UAE’s knowledge production.
The meeting explored ways to tackle the current and future challenges facing the publishing sector here, and underlined that despite the considerable attention given to culture and education in the country, the publishing industry here still faces numerous challenges.
The tremendous efforts of Shaikha Bodour Bint Sultan Al Qasimi, President of EPA, in leading the association, and her clear direction that has resulted in the accomplishment of several milestones were highlighted during the meeting.
“We, at EPA, believe in the importance of the written word, its role in achieving cultural development, and creating a knowledge-based society. Our development strategy is perfectly aligned with the UAE’s goal to make reading a way of life here within the next decade,” said Al Sha’ali.
In a move to encourage the dissemination of Arabic literature in other languages, the session recommended that each participating publisher should select one publication under its name for translation. In achieving this goal, EPA will try to bring in funding for the translation of selected works, by capitalising on its partnerships with various bodies interested in introducing the world to Arabic culture in the UAE and abroad.
The EPA will submit memos to competent authorities to find solutions to the several challenges facing the publishing industry in the UAE. This is in line with 2016 National Law of Reading, which emphasised the importance of supporting the dissemination and distribution of reading materials. The law stipulates that reading materials shall be treated as an essential commodity that are exempt from any fees or taxes, particularly for purposes concerning publishing, authoring, printing or distribution, in addition to exempting them from fees to acquire the International Standard Book Number (ISBN).