The 23rd edition of the Muscat International Book Fair will take place at Muscat’s Oman International Exhibition Centre from February 21 to March 5, with 783 publishing houses from 28 countries taking part directly or through agents.
Dr Abdul Monem Bin Mansour Al Hassani, Minister of Information and Head of the Organising Committee for Muscat International Book Fair, said the fair was an important event on international exhibitions calendar. He said the exhibition was cited by the Arab Publishers Association as one of the most important book fairs worldwide.
He said 28 countries were participating in the exhibition, including 17 Arab countries – Oman, Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, UAE, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Palestine, Sudan, Bahrain, Tunisia, Algeria, Qatar, Morocco, and Libya. The others were: UK, Iran, Turkey, Canada, Japan, Sweden, Brunei, Italy, the US, Germany and Pakistan.
The exhibition will be spread over an area of 11,412 square metres, and will include 1,200 pavilions.
Al Hassani said there was an increase in the number of titles on display – 500,000 titles compared to 450,000 last year; 35 per cent of these were recent releases.Al Hassani also said a number of Omani intellectuals will be honoured this year and there will be “cultural cafes” in a number of participating pavilions.
Hamad Al Mamari, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Heritage and Culture for Cultural Affairs, and Deputy Chairman of the Organising Committee of the Muscat International Book, said the fair will celebrate the achievements of a number of recently-deceased scientists in a seminar dedicated to them.
In 2017, 820,000 people visited the 10-day long Muscat International Book Fair.