Women’s empowerment is reflected in UAE’s publishing industry, too: German expert

ABU DHABI, 28th May, 2022 (WAM) — The achievements in the UAE’s women’s empowerment is reflected in the Emirates’ publishing industry as well, according to a top executive of Frankfurt Book Fair, one of the largest book fairs in the world.

“I am surprised to see that there are a lot of new publishers, especially headed by women in the UAE – very strong women, very knowledgeable and very determined. So, there is women’s empowerment in the publishing industry as well,” said Claudia Kaiser, Vice President of Business Development, Frankfurt Book Fair.

Women’s empowerment, diversity

These women leaders can make a difference in the industry, she explained in an interview with the Emirates News Agency (WAM) at the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair (ADIBF) on Friday.

“Mostly they are the CEOs of the companies. They bring in their own ideas and they bring in new management and measures,” said Kaiser who has been in the senior management of Frankfurt Book Fair since 2003, in different positions.

ADIBF also reflects the UAE’s growing diversity also, noted Kaiser who had lived in the UAE 20 years ago and established a company here.

“And in those days, there were much less different communities in Abu Dhabi and now you can see the difference here at the book fair,” she pointed out.

Now, there are people in the UAE from everywhere in the world. “It’s quite a model and therefore, I think the UAE is also moving ahead with the equal pay and equal treatment of women.”

New trends

At ADIBF, she had a chance to know about the latest trend in publishing industry in the Arab world. There is more demand for self-help/ motivational books, according to publishers, she said. Children’s books are very popular, and fiction also has a market; although these are part of the global trend, Kaiser added.

E-books have not grown as expected across the world, she said. “For instance, in countries like Germany, for many years we only had a five percent growth. But during the pandemic it grew much more. But if people don’t like e-books, then it’s because of the mindset. It’s easier for us to remember what we saw on the printed paper rather than an e-book,” Kaiser explained.

Asked about the future of print books, she said there is a market for everything. Both print books and e-books will coexist. Asked whether she believes print books will never die, she replied, “You cannot say ‘never’. At least they will not die in our lifetime.”

WAM/Binsal Abdulkader