The 23rd edition of Muscat International Book Fair will showcase 500,000 titles of books, of which 35 per cent are new. A total of 783 book publishing houses from 28 countries are participating this year. This was announced by Dr Abdulmunim bin Mansour al Hasani, Minister of Information, at a press conference held on Wednesday. The book fair will be held from February 21 to March 3 at Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre. Three of the prominent Omani thinkers will be rewarded at the opening ceremony, to be held under the auspices of Sayyid Mohammed bin Sultan al Busaidy, Minister of State and Governor of Dhofar.
This year, Salalah is the guest of honour. A cultural and art programme will also be held during the fair. A total of 150 publishing houses from Egypt are participating in the fair, followed by those from Oman, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Arab and other countries. The additions during this edition include the allocation of four halls for cultural activities and a wide corner for children’s activities. There is a special corner for community initiatives, besides cultural cafes in some pavilions. The media centre has been expanded. Some other extended facilities include restaurants, prayer rooms, parking lots, health facilities, clinics, banking services and communication centres.
The Books Friends Corner will celebrate the launch of a
mobile library for child patients at the Royal Hospital. ‘I Can’
corner, designed for children with special needs, has been run
by Al Amal School for the Deaf and Omar bin al Khattab Institute for the Blind.
The Village of Colours, Theatre and Scientific Village corners are designed to mix knowledge with fun.
Shaikh Hamad bin Hilal al Maamari, Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Heritage and Culture for Cultural Affairs, Deputy Chairman of the Organising Committee of the Muscat International Book Fair, reviewed efforts of the Cultural Committee in preparing the exhibition, events, seminars and cultural salons that will be held on all days of the exhibition, in addition to theatrical performances and poetry evenings.
He added that the fair will celebrate the achievements of a number of scientists through a seminar dedicated to them in addition to another symposium on late Abdul Hussein AbdulRaza.
Ali bin Khalfan al Jabri, Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Information, reviewed the efforts of the media committee in preparing the conference and the facilities to serve media men who will cover this big event.
Mai al Abria