File photo of Expo 2020 Dubai opening ceremony on Sept 30. For illustrative purposes only. Image Credit: Expo 2020 Dubai

Abu Dhabi: The Ministry of Culture and Youth on Saturday announced that it will host the 22nd session of the ‘Conference of Arab Culture Ministers’ in collaboration with the Arab League Educational, Cultural and Scientific Organisation (ALECSO) from December 19 to 20 at Expo 2020 Dubai.

The conference will host 21 ministers in charge of cultural affairs in various Arab countries, as well as the director-general of ALECSO and other key figures from the Arab world.

The conference will discuss a comprehensive plan for Arab culture and its modernisation and discuss ways to keep it relevant today while promoting cultural cooperation among Arab nations. It will also seek to foster exchanges with other cultures around the world. The event is set to propose the ambassador programme to promote Arab culture.

It will focus on a number of topics, most notably the ‘Status Report’ and the ‘Future of the Arabic Language’, published by the Ministry of Culture and Youth, in partnership with the Arabic Language Advisory Council.

Festival and award

Furthermore, the conference will discuss ways to develop and launch joint projects in the fields of culture, heritage, and the Arabic language. The participating ministers will also join the opening ceremony of the Arabic Language Summit, and Al Burda Festival and Award, which will be held in conjunction with this session.

Al Burda will feature intellectuals and innovators in Islamic culture from around the world, in an effort to enhance the UAE’s position as a cultural hub and an incubator for creative arts through various dialogue sessions, art exhibitions, and performances.

The event will discuss the outcomes of the ‘World Conference on Creative Economy’, and draw up a five-year roadmap of joint Arab efforts to record intangible heritage with UNESCO.

The Chair of the conference is set to be handed over from the Arab Republic of Egypt, Chair of the 21st Session, to the UAE to lead the current session. The agenda includes the ratification of the theme and venue of the next session of the conference, which is expected to be hosted in Saudi Arabia.

Closer cooperation

Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi

Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, Minister of Culture and Youth, said: “[The conference] is a very significant platform to promote Arab cultural cooperation and devise new ways to ensure its enrichment and advancement. The United Arab Emirates is committed to fostering greater cooperation with ALECSO and strengthening its role in supporting the organisation’s efforts.”

Dr Mohamed Ould Amar, ALECSO’s director-general, said: “The conference is very promising for our organisation and gives us great hope for the future of Arab culture. The conference was planned after a lot of thought and deliberation in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, and by bringing together high-ranking ministers, it seeks to promote collaborative Arab activities in the fields of culture and heritage.”