Start of Cairo International Book Fair Delayed

Make that Jan. 29 to Feb. 8...

The Ministry of Culture announced yesterday that the start of the 43rd Cairo International Book Fair would be pushed back from the 26th of January to a start date of the 29th.

According to a release posted on the book fair site, the ministry delayed the fair—which is now set to run until Feb. 8—because they found themselves in need of more prep time.

Part of the delay is because the fair is in a new location this year: It’s at the Nasr City conference center rather than the fair grounds. General Book Organization Chairman Saber Arab stated in the release that the fair’s timing—still set to coincide with mid-year school vacations—will benefit both visitors and publishers.

It will also benefit the level of chaos, which is always strong at the fair, attended by some 2 million visitors.

China is this year’s guest of honor, although presumably many more prominent events will celebrate Egyptian Nobel prize winner Naguib Mahfouz’s centenary year.

Other winter book fairs in the region:

Reader Melanie notes that the Casablanca Book Fair is scheduled for 11-20 February 2011 in Morocco.

And the Abu Dhabi Book Fair and Emirates Lit Fest should still be on track for March.