Sharjah book fair from November 16 to Nov 26

The Government of Sharjah has granted a total of $300,000 (Dh1.1 million) to the International Book Fair's translation centre during the upcoming book fair.

Speaking at a press conference on Sunday, Ahmad Bin Rekadh Al Ameri, Director of Sharjah International Book Fair, pointed out that even though the translation centre is a key feature every year at the book fair, "this year is different because in celebration of the 30th edition of the Sharjah International Book Fair, we will translate books not only from Arabic into other languages but vice versa as well."

The Centre for Translation will serve as a platform to provide publishing houses with translation grants, networking and educational programmes.

The 30th edition of the Sharjah International Book Fair is held under the patronage of His Highness Dr Shaikh Sultan Bin Mohammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, and will run from November 16 to 26.

The fair will also feature a "rights table" on November 14 and 15, where publishers and businesses can discuss proposed grants for rights sold during this event.

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The ten-day annual book fair is recognised as one of the most significant book fairs in the Middle East and the Arab world, as this year it draws 750 publishers, showcases books from 42 countries, and expects to attract more than 400,000 visitors from both trade and consumer markets.

"A total of 137 UAE publishing houses will participate at the book fair, and all Arab countries except for Libya will be participating," said Al Ameri, who added that the event will feature up to 260,000 titles in various languages.

More than 50 international publishers from more than 16 countries have confirmed their attendance. The programme will also be attended by Arab publishers from across the region keen to build their networks with international publishers. As part of this year's celebration, Saudi Arabia has been invited as the fair's Guest of Honour, and the cultural focus will be on India.

Al Ameri said, "There will be more than 20 top Indian publishers and there will be a showcase to highlight the presence of ten distinguished authors," including Dr Shashi Tharoor, Shobhaa De and Chetan Bhagat.

In addition, this year's book fair will offer a Live Cookery Show 2011 programme that comprises 32 recipes across the world. Some world-renowned authors participating include crime writer Peter James, New York Times best-selling novelist Kate Mosse, and award-winning historian George Goodwin.