28th edition of Muscat International Book Fair concludes

Muscat: The curtain came down today on the activities of the 28th session of the Muscat International Book Fair at the Oman Convention and Exhibition Center amid a diverse cultural presence from inside and outside the Sultanate of Oman, under the patronage of His Excellency Dr. Abdullah bin Nasser Al Harrasi, Minister of Information and Chairman of the Main Committee of the Muscat International Book Fair.

Ahmed bin Saud Al Rawahi, Director of the Muscat International Book Fair, said in his speech during the closing ceremony: During the days of the exhibition, thirty-four countries presented their treasures of knowledge and the latest productions of publishing houses locally and internationally.

He added: In the space of this exhibition, visitors and patrons from all segments of society flocked, thereby achieving its lofty national goals in promoting the values ​​of reading, raising awareness, and supporting the publishing industry in The Sultanate of Oman, in addition to supporting Omani writers and writers.

He explained that the book fair was a spacious cultural space, with its solid cultural program, which included approximately 130 diverse events, as well as activities directed to children and young people. The fair also hosted in its session this year an elite group of symbols of thought, culture and literature from inside and outside the Sultanate of Oman, who presented a summary of their experiences. Their ideas, in addition to the large group of media professionals who represented various visual, print and audio media, contributed to conveying a vivid and honorable image of the exhibition in particular and of the Sultanate of Oman in general.

Ahmed bin Saud Al Rawahi, Director of the Muscat International Book Fair, announced at the conclusion of his speech that North Al Sharqiyah Governorate will be the guest of honor of the fair in its twenty-ninth session, which will be held during the period from April 25 to May 2, 2024.

For her part, Raya Bint Amer Al Jabriya, member of the Community Initiatives Committee, announced the National Reading Program project through an annual competition among young people implemented by the Ministry of Education and supervised by the Community Initiatives Committee at the Muscat International Book Fair.

She explained that the program aims to enhance students’ linguistic and expressive abilities, stimulate critical thinking, and enhance the love of reading. It targets all governorates of the Sultanate, and more than 15,000 male and female students benefit from it in its first season. It continues over the course of an academic year according to three competitive stages, and the winners will be honored at the Muscat International Book International at the 29th session.

The cultural community initiatives that won the exhibition award were also announced: Al-Khalil Literature Group at Sultan Qaboos University, Al-Shahba Literary Arts Group at Nizwa University, and the Culture and Literature Group at the Applied Sciences University, Shinas Branch.

The ceremony included the presentation of a visual film representing a harvest of the exhibition’s cultural activities and nights, presented within the framework of the cultural and artistic program, attracting visitors to the exhibition in all its corners, including the activities of the Cultural Committee and Al Dhahirah Governorate – the guest of honor of the exhibition – official and private institutions and the Children’s Corner.

It is worth noting that the publishing houses participating in the exhibition this year amounted to 847 houses from 34 countries, of which 676 participated directly and 171 through agencies, while the total titles and publications listed on the site reached 622 thousand titles, including the Omani book collection, which amounted to 19 thousand books. The number of modern publications published between 2023 and 2024 is about 35,989 books, Arabic books are 269 thousand, and foreign books are 200 thousand books. The Ministry of Information participated in this session with a pavilion that included four pillars representing: the Oman News Agency, the General Directorate of Electronic Media (Ain Platform and Media Portal), Nizwa Magazine, and the General Directorate of Publications and Artistic Works.

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