Sat, 28 Jan 2023

RIYADH, 9th December, 2022 (WAM) -- Mubarak Al Nakhi, Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Culture and Youth (MCY), participated in the 23rd session of the Conference of Arab Culture Ministers, which was held in the Saudi capital, Riyadh, under the patronage of His Highness Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Farhan, Saudi Arabia's Minister of Culture and Chairman of the National Committee for Education, Culture and Science in the Kingdom.

During the opening ceremony, Al Nakhi handed over the presidency of the conference to His Highness Prince Badr, as the previous edition of the conference was hosted by the UAE last year at the Dubai International Exhibition Centre on the sidelines of Expo 2020 Dubai.

Addressing the conference, Al Nakhi stressed the importance of cultural coordination between Arab countries, and praised the efforts of cultural authorities in the region to build a unified Arab cultural entity. This entity would contribute to strengthening dialogue, coexistence, peace and brotherhood, he said, adding that would enable Arab societies and cultural institutions to keep in step with the accelerated global transformations, and work towards a sustainable future by building knowledge-based economies.

He also pointed out that holding this session complements constructive dialogue and encourages initiatives that emerged from last year's session hosted by the UAE. He said that the recommendations of the previous session help in unifying Arab efforts in the cultural fields, including cooperation for the registration and documentation of intangible heritage on the global lists of UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation), and mobilising Arab efforts to develop the cultural and creative industries, which he described as a significant engine of growth for the economy.

The MCY Under-Secretary pointed out the outcomes of the last session and said, "We developed a number of programmes during the last session and focused on several pressing issues. The most prominent of which was to review and update the comprehensive plan for Arab culture, which the UAE was honoured to support. We firmly believe in the importance of enriching Arab culture and preserving the national and civilisational identity of our homeland."

"The United Arab Emirates adopted a number of recommendations, such as emphasising the success of the efforts made during the COVID-19 pandemic, which contributed to the continuity of cultural work. We also implemented several cultural initiatives, fostering communication between Arab countries, and calling upon them to adopt a policy of digital transformation. There is a need to digitise cultural content in anticipation of any emergency. We are harnessing modern technology to serve the cultural movement and mobilise joint Arab cultural work in that direction," he noted.

He also praised the efforts of ALECSO (Arab League Educational, Cultural and Scientific Organisation) and the Permanent Committee for Arab Culture, which work to improve the status of Arab culture. Al Nakhi affirmed his confidence in the role that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will play as the Chair of the current session of the Conference of Arab Ministers of Culture in achieving the key objectives of the conference and unifying efforts for the advancement and sustainability of culture in the Arab region. He praised the main theme of the conference, "Culture and the Green Future", which highlights the importance of culture as an inherent component of sustainable development.

Organised by ALECSO and hosted by member states every two years, this conference is one of the most important cultural events in the Arab world to foster unified efforts from Arab countries in the field of culture. This year's edition seeks to harness the power of culture to raise awareness about the challenge that climate change poses to humanity, and to address long-term crises associated with global warming, biodiversity loss, uncontrolled urbanisation, and unsustainable development.

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