Sharjah Publishing City Free Zone officials hold discussions with delegates at the Turin Book Fair.
Sohaila Ahmed, Staff Reporter
Sharjah Publishing City Free Zone (SPCFZ), a Sharjah Book Authority (SBA) subsidiary, is at one of Italy’s leading literary events, the Turin International Book Fair (TIBF 2019), to connect with publishers from around Europe and showcase business opportunities that it is the world’s only free zone for printing and publishing.
SPCFZ has visited over 60 stands at the fair to network with participating publishers at TIBF 2019, introducing them to Sharjah’s attractive free zone business environment, which allows 100 per cent ownership to foreign businesses, fully-equipped office spaces, and a full cache of services including printing, licensing and distribution.
The free zone’s officials have met affordable books dealers to discuss ways to bring more reasonably-priced books to readers. Rotolito Graphic Industries, one of the largest printing groups in Italy, has shown interest to pursue the possibilities of establishing business in Sharjah. They also discussed ways in which SPCFZ can facilitate Rotolito’s interest in expanding their printing business into Mena region and Africa, with Sharjah as a regional operational hub.
SPCFZ has also met Milan-based publisher, White Star, to discuss the potential and possibilities of opening a branch of their offices in Sharjah’s free zone. White Star has a huge market for their children’s books in China, and has explored the possibility of entering the Mena region through Sharjah. Their CEO will be visiting SPCFZ later this month.
SPCFZ also met Global Italia Publishers, who were appraised of the benefits of having branch offices at the SPCFZ, and the advantage of participating at the Sharjah International Book Fair.
Salim Omar Salim, Director, SPCFZ, said: “Turin has offered us a vibrant platform to connect with potential opportunities in Italian and European markets. We have had several positive discussions since we arrived here, and will continue to meet more publishing representatives. Sharjah Publishing City Free Zone is an asset to not just to the UAE or our region, but also to the global publishing and printing industry. SPCFZ is a centralised business hub that caters to all industry needs, without exception. Write, design, publish, print, store, and distribute all from one single, purpose-built, state-of-the-art facility.” He added: “Sharjah believes in the power of books to foster knowledge, broaden horizons and open dialogue.”
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