Chinese Consul-General Li Xuhang with Dr. Mohammed Salem Al Mazrouei, member of the Board of Trustees of MBR Library Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: Over 1,000 books about Chinese culture, arts and children’s stories have been donated by the Consulate-General of China in Dubai to the Mohammed bin Rashid Library.

During the hand-over ceremony themed ‘Enjoying Reading, Sharing Books, Promoting Friendship’, Chinese Consul-General Li Xuhang said the initiative “is an opportunity to witness the communication and collaboration between the ancient Arab and Chinese wisdom.”

He also announced, together with Dr. Mohammed Salem Al Mazrouei, member of the Board of Trustees of MBR Library, the establishment of Chinese Book Corner and Chinese Reading Day.

Chinese Reading Day

“We agreed that from now on, every August 8 will be Chinese Reading Day. In the future, we will work with MBR Library to organise many interesting, colourful and attractive cultural exchange activities to promote the cross-cultural communications, people-to-people understanding and friendship between China and the UAE,” Li noted.

He said: “Not long ago, I took my first visit to this beautiful library. During the visit, a brilliant idea of putting up a Chinese Book Corner and setting a Chinese Reading Day was initiated. It took only a couple of days to make it into reality. This is really amazing that can happen only in Dubai.”

“I would like to express my sincere appreciation and respect to the MBR Library team. It is your efficiency, passion and commitment that has made today’s event a great success…MBR Library is the largest public library in the UAE… It is a significant milestone in culture, society and economic development, and it is also a lighthouse of knowledge, creativity and wisdom with millions of books from all over the world,” the Chinese consul-general added.

Importance of reading

During his speech, Li continued: “Chinese President HE Xi Jinping has once said ‘Reading keeps our mind alive, enlightens our wisdom, and nourishes our vitality.’ HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, has a similar saying: ‘Reading is the nourishment for the soul and mind’. The leaders of the two countries have both emphasised the importance of reading, guiding us to read more and read well.”

MBR Library: Reader’s paradise

Mohammed bin Rashid Library, which opened in June this year, is currently housing over 1 million printed and digital books in Arabic and foreign languages, with a target of increasing the collection to around 3 million books. There are also over six million dissertations; 73,000 music scores, 75,000 videos; 13,000 articles, and more than 5,000 historical print and digital journals.

MBR Library is located on the banks of Dubai Creek in Al Jaddaf. Library membership can be obtained by registering on its website and mobile app. It is open Monday to Saturday from 9am to 9pm.