Istanbul, July 27, 2021

Bodour Al Qasimi, President of the International Publishers Association (IPA), has welcomed the Turkish Publishers Association’s (TPA) decision to organise the International Istanbul Book Fair in November 2021, adding that the return to in-person events indicates that the world of publishing is adapting to the realities of the new normal and gearing up to regain its full potential.

These remarks from Bodour Al Qasimi came during a meeting with TPA in Istanbul, Turkey. The meeting was held in the presence of the TPA President, Kenan Kocaturk, members of the association and prominent local publishers.

Al Qasimi stressed that IPA was focusing on establishing effective communication with publishers’ associations worldwide, in order to discuss the developmental challenges facing businesses in the pandemic-affected economic climate, and help them design agile business models to ensure their growth and sustainability.

The IPA President emphasised that Covid-19 has offered the industry an opportunity to reevaluate current business models and replace them with more agile ones, with a strong focus on pushing the agenda of digital publishing. Publishers who had been perceptive enough to expand their business models to include digital offerings have been able to rebound quickly.

The IPA has been working closely with its members to assess any gaps in the knowledge needed to transform their businesses to adapt to both the current circumstances and the post-pandemic era.  Al Qasimi added that the upcoming IPA Academy, to be launched later this year, would seek to provide publishers around the world with a curated list of courses aimed at meeting the urgent necessity for capacity building and upskilling for publishers and introduce them to the tools needed to re-design and revitalise their business models.

Reiterating that IPA would continue to work tirelessly to strengthen the global publishing sector, Bodour Al Qasimi stressed the importance of solidarity amongst publishers, and amongst all stakeholders across the global publishing industry ecosystem.

Al Qasimi took the opportunity to congratulate the TPA on its tireless work in defending the freedom of publish principle, one of the IPA’s two primary objectives, and the protection of copyright. The TPA shares its findings on freedom to publish both in Turkey and worldwide in an annual report, and its efforts recently culminated in the organizing of the 2020 Freedom of Thought and Expression Awards, which were held as an online ceremony in January this year.

The IPA President’s visit to Turkey follows a series of meetings with publishers’ associations in Egypt, Kenya, Ivory Coast, Ghana and Georgia earlier this year.