Book Fair kicks off

HARARE - The Zimbabwe International Book Fair (ZIBF) kicks off today with the Indaba workshop at the Crowne Plaza Monomotapa Hotel with discussions set to ignite the six-day arts extravaganza.

The main edition of this year’s event, which is running under the theme; “Growing the Knowledge Economy Through Research, Writing, Publishing and Reading”, runs through to August 1 in the Harare Gardens.

The Indaba workshops will see the presentation of papers on various sub-themes connected to the main theme.

Some of the sub-themes for 2015 include research, writing and the creative industries, book policy, intellectual property, copyright and heritage knowledge, libraries as temples of knowledge and publishing in the digital revolution.

According to the chairperson of the Zimbabwe International Book Fair Association (ZIBFA) executive board Obey Bvute, the 2015 Book Fair promises to be an unforgettable experience.

During a press conference to confirm the dates of the 2015 Book Fair, Bvute said they would want people to experience their anti-piracy interventions first-hand.

“I am also pleased to inform you that we shall actively focus on anti-piracy to promote the welfare and intellectual rights of writers and publishers. This will require us to collectively look at new ways of curbing piracy and learn from other countries on how they protect intellectual property rights even in the face of both the print and digital knowledge economy.

“Prior submissions on this aspect will be consolidated and evaluated on their impacts and outcomes and fed into the new initiative to be implemented,” Bvute said.

The Bvute-led board has a lot of work to do as it braces itself to tackle the myriad challenges facing the arts in general and the book sector in particular.

It appears, however, that they have hit the ground running with promises that the new board is seized with upping the ante in their fight against the scourge of piracy.

The ZIBF must continue to shine as Africa’s premier book and publishing trade fair showcasing the largest and most diverse annual exhibition of books, magazines, journals as well as printing and publishing technology.

Major activities at this year’s fair will include the indaba, writers’ workshop, copyright workshop, marketing/buyers meeting, the live literature centre and the children’s reading tent among an array of others, which offer a viable marketplace for books and information about Africa and the ultimate meeting place of literary cultures.

There is need to support the ZIBF in its pursuit to create a marketplace for the exhibition and promotion of books, periodicals and publishing technology while at the same time facilitating intra-African and international trade in these.

The indaba workshops should provide a meeting place for the exchange of ideas and information for all stakeholders in the literary industry.

The new board at ZIBFA, who have retained traditional partners — Culture Fund in partnership with the European Union, Norcode, Kopinor and the Norwegian Embassy in partnership with Hivos and the British Council — needs Zimbabweans’ support as they seek to seek other revenue channels.


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