Guadalajara: Bodour Al Qasimi, President of the International Publishers Association (IPA), has revealed the most prevalent concerns related to the publishing industry and provided insights and solutions on how to deal with these points of emerging markets, the importance of translation as well as inclusion and diversity.
During the International Publishers Forum held at the 36th edition of the Guadalajara International Book Fair (FIL) in Mexico, the IPA President stated that emerging markets are the future of the publishing industry due to the sheer number of potential readers in these regions. She commented that Mexico and Brazil are good examples of emerging markets that will play much larger roles in the global publishing industry.
Adding to this, Al Qasimi explained that global publishing players are particularly interested in developing markets and are ready to partner with promising local publishers. The IPA President advised that emerging markets should be ready for these partnerships and collaborations and invest in their e-commerce capabilities as well as ensuring the necessary skills are there to facilitate their advancements.
Al Qasimi made it clear that translation was extremely important and explained that FIL 2022 was a good example of the value and requirement of having quality translation capabilities, as without such services a gathering of this nature would be impossible. Translation is essential for expanding beyond local or regional markets to attract new readers, and Al Qasimi stressed that emerging markets needed to make translation a central pillar in their strategies.
The IPA president also enlightened the audience to the fact that diversity and inclusion were extremely important in the publishing industry but that they could often mean different things depending on the market. For example, depending on the market, diversity could relate to gender demographics where in another market it could mean more opportunities for minorities. It could also relate to the inclusion of the youth when it comes to decision-making processes. “Whatever diversity and inclusion mean in your market, making it a priority is critical,” the IPA President revealed.
Concluding the forum, Al Qasimi provided insights into the recent challenges the world and the industry have faced due to the pandemic, shining light on both underlying issues as well as opportunities that this period had exposed, saying “All in all it is clear that we have a robust market that is thirsty for books, and that is exciting.”
During her visit to Mexico, Bodour Al Qasimi met with the National Chamber of the Mexican Publishing Industry (CANIEM) and discussed various advancements and issues, stating that Mexico is one of the most important emerging markets in the world and that the Guadalajara International Book Fair is the most important publishing gathering in the Spanish speaking world.
Al Qasimi reaffirmed the IPA’s commitment to support more growth for CANIEM’s market and congratulated Guadalajara for being selected for the next International Publishers Congress in 2024.
The IPA President also attended a business breakfast meeting with Grupo Ibero-americano de Editores (GIE), where she discussed the concept behind establishing PublisHer to support female publishing leaders and address the industry’s entrenched gender imbalances and drive an international agenda for change.