Tbilisi, Georgia: Representing the literature community across the globe, Ms. Bodour Al Qasimi, President of the International Publishers Association (IPA), emphasized the role played by publishers in encouraging principles of dialogue and understanding that help to consolidating peace during conflicts.
Addressing the delegates at the Caucasus and Black Sea Basin Countries’ Regional Publishing Conference in Tbilisi, Ms. Al Qasimi shed light on the many challenges impacting publishers following the pandemic, from supply chain disruptions to copyright issues and environmental pressures.
The IPA President spoke about broader issues of sustainability, diversity and inclusion, which are vital to the association’s ongoing discussions on the future of the industry, while also pointing out the vital role of publishers in upholding the principles of dialogue and understanding, serving as a gateway to peace in times of conflict.
Ms. Al Qasimi’s visit to Georgia comes at the time when its capital, Tbilisi ends its time as UNESCO’s 2021 World Book Capital. The IPA Official praised the city for its vibrant agenda of creative cultural and literary activities, and reaffirmed her belief that it would leave a positive and enduring legacy, just as being named World Book Capital in 2019 has done for Sharjah.
During her visit, Ms. Al Qasimi’s met members of the Georgian Publishers and Booksellers Association, stressing the significance of upskilling and capacity building as priorities for publishers given the shifts taking place in the industry. Ms. Al Qasimi called upon all publishers to take advantage of the world-class learning materials offered by the IPA Academy.
As part of the visit, Al Qasimi launched the Georgian translation of her children’s book, World Book Capital with a reading session in English, while Ms. Gvantsa Jobava, Deputy Chair of the Georgian Publishers and Booksellers Association, told the story in Georgian.