For four days, Sharjah will celebrate the intellectual and cultural richness of the Emirati and Arab worlds in the heart of Bologna. Under the supervision of the Sharjah Book Authority (SBA), the emirate is organizing a series of events, workshops, art and heritage exhibitions that reflect its advancements in the children’s book sector.
Previously, Sharjah was guest of honor at Paris International Book Fair, New Delhi International Book Fair, Sao Paulo International Book Fair and Turin International Book Fair, among others. .
Sharjah, under the leadership and vision of His Highness Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, has prioritized the acceleration of knowledge and culture as a fundamental part of the development of the emirate. This led to the establishment in 1982 of the Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF), which at its 40th edition last year won the title of the world’s largest book fair in terms of sales and buying rights, and has been ranked as one of the top three book fairs for the past 10 years.
The emirate is also home to the Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival (SCRF), which is a unique platform that brings together publishers, illustrators and authors specializing in children’s literature from around the world and showcases the latest works. and the most important publishers in the field. In addition, the annual festival also offers an extensive programming program of interactive entertainment workshops and cultural events.
Additionally, in 1998, Sharjah was named the Cultural Capital of the Arab World by UNESCO; in 2014, it was honored as the capital of Islamic culture by UNESCO; in 2016, it was declared the capital of the Arab press; and in 2019, Sharjah was recognized as the World Book Capital by UNESCO.
The emirate’s development project is not limited to supporting the book industry alone; its cultural vision extends to all forms of art, literature and knowledge and includes local, Arab and human heritage. The emirate is now home to 16 museums and hosts various exhibitions and festivals on Islamic art, Arabic calligraphy, music and contemporary and modern fine arts. It also sponsors international awards for scientific and literary research, studies and works of art.
Institutions participating under the Sharjah banner at BCBF 2022 will highlight the pillars of the emirate that have raised Sharjah’s profile on the global cultural map.
Sheikh Fahim Al Qasimi, Chairman of the Department of Government Relations (DGR) and Head of Sharjah’s Guest of Honor Delegation, said: “Sharjah has a unique development path, which puts it at the forefront of global development. This unique journey is grounded in knowledge, culture, heritage and the arts, and by honing the skills of community members and strengthening societal bonds through shared values and a diverse program of events including cultural activities and community. What the world has witnessed in recent decades reinforces the emirate’s wisdom that anything built on knowledge is enduring and can be passed down from generation to generation.
The President added: “Being celebrated as a guest of honor at major international book fairs, including the BCBF, is a clear indicator of Sharjah’s success and achievements in achieving economic, societal growth and sustainable culture. It is also a recognition of the path taken by Sharjah to facilitate access to sources of knowledge for children and to involve the younger generations in the development and cultural programs of Sharjah. It provides a nurturing environment through the initiation of programs and policies that reinforce nationalist and human values in new generations.