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A total of 302 books have been selected as part of a Dh2.3 million grant programme by Abu Dhabi Arabic Language Centre. Photo for illustrative purpose only. Image Credit:

Abu Dhabi: A total of 302 books have been selected as part of a Dh2.3 million grant programme by Abu Dhabi Arabic Language Centre (ALC).

The grants are provided as part of the ALC’s Spotlight on Light programme, which is designed to support publishing houses and encourage the creation of audio and electronic books.

“The continued increase in the number of grants offered reflects the commitment of the ALC to support the publishing sector and assist in the recovery of the publishing industry, especially after the challenges caused by the pandemic,” Dr Ali bin Tamim, the ALC chairman, said.

Three categories

The 2021 edition of Spotlight on Rights received 1,042 submissions for grants. Dh2.3 million was eventually distributed in three categories — Dh1.67 for 138 printed books, Dh230,000 for 41 audio books, and Dh449,807 for 123 e-books.

A printed book for children receives Dh9,000, whereas other printed books receive Dh15,000 each. Grant values for the conversion of a printed book to an e-book range from Dh3,700 to Dh4,700, whereas the grant for recording an audio book ranges from Dh5,500 to Dh9,000.

“At the ALC, we believe in supporting the publishing sector with a comprehensive strategy that establishes necessary platforms, promotes engagement and connects the publisher, the creative community and the audience. This strategy provides publishers with direct incentives and supports them with positive initiatives to help boost production and expedites the sector’s full recovery,” said Mouza Al Shamsi, the ALC acting executive director.

First payment

Once a grant is approved, the publisher receives the first payment, equal to 60 per cent of the total grant value. After that, the publisher receives the second payment, equal to 40 per cent of the total value, when the first translated book manuscript or a draft of the electronic or audible book is submitted.

Since its launch in 2009, the Spotlight on Rights programme has supported 612 books with a total value of Dh1.8 million. In 2020, the programme introduced audio and e-book grants to assist with the publishing sector’s accelerated development worldwide.