In pictures: Riyadh International Book Fair 2018
The UAE being named a guest of honour at the fair, particularly given that it coincides with the UAE's Year of Zayed at the Riyadh International Convention and Exhibition Centre
The Riyadh International Book Fair is one of the most significant cultural events in Saudi Arabia, seeing the highest sales among all Arab fairs with more than 500 participating Arab and international publishing houses and more than 80 cultural activities. Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development, said that the gesture demonstrates the depth of the historic relations that unites the two countries across the cultural, intellectual, and literary spheres. She stated that this step will bolster efforts to strengthen cultural exchange between the two countries through the sharing of a wide range of artistic and literary works at one of the foremost leading book fairs in the region. Al Kaabi said, "Culture has always reflected the sophisticated character of the relationships shared between the two nations and their people. This fact is exemplified in its most advanced form in the relationship shared between the UAE and Saudi Arabia. Cultural integration is an essential part of enhancing the growth of the political, economic, and strategic relations between our two states." The fair hosts a Guest of Honour each year to showcase their literary history and publications for visitors, in addition to participating in a variety of activities, cultural seminars, and poetry recitals organised for the event. Sheikh Shakhbout bin Nahyan Al Nahyan, UAE Ambassador to Saudi Arabia, thanked the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz of Saudi Arabia, for granting the UAE the opportunity to participate as the guest of honour at the fair, which is a leading cultural and intellectual platform in the region. Sarah bin Yousef Al Amiri, Minister of State, has visited the UAE Pavilion at the Riyadh International Book Fair, where she viewed the activities of the many participating Emirati authorities. As part of his visit to the Riyadh International Book Fair, Dr. Zaki Nusseibeh, Minister of State, has participated in a seminar entitled '2018: Year of Zayed', which shed light on the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, his visionary leadership and pioneering foreign policy. The UAE Pavilion at the Riyadh International Book Fair has been well received by visitors, drawing large crowds who enjoyed an array of activities organised by 18 Emirati cultural institutions. Over the course of the fair, the pavilion will play host to a series of poetry evenings held by the Emirates Writers Union, the Poetry Academy and the Sharjah Book Authority. The programme will also include two seminars on the publishing industry in the UAE courtesy of the Emirates Publishers Association, taking place on 21st and 23rd March. A number of Kuwaiti officials affirmed on Friday their keenness on taking part in the Riyadh International Book Fair 2018, describing the Arab cultural event as "very significant".