Emirates News Agency – Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development supports ‘Emirates Publishers Emergency Fund’

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ABU DHABI, 11th June, 2020 (WAM) — The Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development announced that it will support an ‘Emirates Publishers Emergency Fund’ through a national programme to support innovators.

Sheikha Bodour bint Sultan Al Qasimi, Founder and Honorary President of Emirates Publishers Association, EPA, yesterday launched the AED 1 million fund to support a host of publishers in the UAE whose businesses have been severely impacted by the outbreak of the coronavirus, COVID-19, pandemic.

This move aims to help Emirati publishing houses maintain the sustainability of their cultural activities and continue supplying the community with knowledge and cultural content.

Sheikha Bodour Al Qasimi said, “Preserving our heritage stories, cultural identity and cultural production is necessary, especially during times of crises. Therefore, we are all invited to support and protect innovation industries, in general, and publishing, in particular, so the sector can overcome the crisis with fewer losses.”

“Many people working in the book market have witnessed the effects of the coronavirus outbreak, which is a crisis that requires everyone to wait until its end. However, these circumstances can create opportunities, and the UAE’s cultural scene has proven its ability to address these challenges quickly, reinforcing our trust in the future and highlighting our cultural mobility and the knowledge-makers of the UAE,” she added.

Sheikha Bodour thanked Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development, for supporting cultural organisations and launching initiatives to strengthen the local publishing sector.

Al Kaabi thanked Sheikha Bodour for the initiative, which reflects the keenness of the UAE to support publishers affected by the stoppage in their operations over the past months.

“This initiative will reinforce the country’s publishing industry, help produce distinguished cultural content, support Emirati publishers and shape their future, enabling them to play a leading role in the innovative economy by reinforcing their competitiveness and advancing the UAE’s cultural scene,” she said.

“The objectives of the fund are in line with the National Creative Relief Programme, which was launched last month by the Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development, to provide financial grants to independent individuals and small and medium-sized enterprises in the area of culture and innovation, to help them overcome the difficulties caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” she added.

The objectives set out by the fund will be achieved by EPA in partnership with the Sharjah Book Authority, SBA, and Sharjah Publishing City, SPC.

EPA will be entrusted with the task of coordinating and communicating with Emirati bookmakers, and will also guide them on ways to avail of the provisions included in the fund. The fund aims to reach affected publishers operating within the country, and by identifying the complex challenges the industry is grappling with, it will further boost efforts to ensure the continuity of their businesses.

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