Deputy PM opens 25th international book fair

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KevinWaller

The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs H E Ahmed bin Abdullah bin Zaid Al Mahmoud opened the 25th Doha International Book Fair yesterday at Qatar National Convention Centre (QNCC).

The Minister of Culture, Arts and Heritage H E Dr Hamad bin Abdulaziz Al Kuwari, senior officials and heads of missions were present. A record 432 publishing houses from 29 countries and 72 authorised companies representing publishers are taking part in the fair organised by the Ministry of Culture, Arts and Heritage.

Thirty publishing houses are participating for the first time in the fair which features more than 12,000 Arabic and over 2,500 foreign titles.

Marking its silver jubilee, the fair runs alongside the Doha Cultural Festival, with events and activities, including an art exhibition, cultural and children activities and a play entitled Saqr Quraish.

The art exhibition features 45 paintings by some leading Arab artists, from the collection of the ministry.

“This exhibition is called Panorama of Arab Artists which showcases pieces from the collection of the ministry,” said prominent artist and Guest of Honour Faraj Daham.

Daham, who started his career in art in 1972, is exhibiting paintings he created in 2010.

He thanked the organisers of the fair and the expo, saying the 10-day fair is a suitable venue for the exhibition being held along with the fair for the first time.

The US, South Korean and several other embassies are also taking part in the fair which also features seminars.

One of the first-time exhibitors is Qatar National Library (QNL) introducing its online resources and providing information on its world-class databases and the recently launched Qatar Digital Library and its resources and services.

Interactive children’s storytelling activities are also being held at the QNL stand.

The book fair is being held for the first time at QNCC and is open to the public until January 17.