Indonesia to be LBF Market Focus in 2019

LBF announces Indonesia will be Market Focus in 2019

London 5 April 2018: Indonesia will be the Market Focus for The London Book Fair 2019 (12-14 March 2019).

The London Book Fair Market Focus programme, which is run in partnership with the British Council, will include cultural events celebrating Indonesian authors and books, and a professional programme designed to enable and enhance business opportunities. Market Focus offers UK and international publishers the chance to forge new business partnerships and expand into global markets.

Indonesia is the fourth most populous country in the world and the largest producer of books in Southeast Asia (and a large consumer of foreign titles). Over the last few years there has been a substantial growth in the sale of rights of Indonesian books to territories around the world, ranging from fashion and design to Islam and politics.

Through publishing incentives and an extensive cultural programme including its LBF Market Focus partnership, Indonesia through The Indonesian Agency for Creative Economy and the Ministry of Education and Culture is making a concerted effort to introduce the country’s “17,000 Islands of Imagination” to the international public and, especially, to the UK.

Ricky Joseph Pesik, Vice Chairman, The Indonesian Agency for Creative Economy (BEKRAF), said:

“Indonesia’s creative economy industry has experienced exponential growth in the past three years. Indonesia’s creative sector has employed 15.9 million people with 7.3 percent contribution to gross domestic product (GDP) or equivalent to 67 billion USD and export contribution of 20 billion USD.

As the Country Market Focus in The London Book Fair 2019, we (Bekraf) would like to take this opportunity to bring Indonesia’s publishing sector and related sectors into the next level by featuring the finest authors, publishers and Indonesia’s rich cultural and literary heritage with hope, it will provide a huge opportunity to Indonesia’s creative sector, specifically in the publishing sector.”

Director General of Culture, Ministry of Education and Culture, Republic of Indonesia, Hilmar Farid, said:

“A book fair isn’t just about buying and selling rights to books; it represents an exchange of ideas and cultural values. As Market Focus Country at The London Book Fair 2019, Indonesia will, in partnership with the British Council, spread the word of Indonesia’s font of creativity through Great Britain and beyond.”

Jacks Thomas, Director of The London Book Fair, commented:

“Vibrant, diverse, fascinating and fast-moving, we are lucky to have the opportunity of finding out more about Indonesia – the country, its people and its publishing. I know they will make great Market Focus partners next year and look forward to putting Indonesia at the forefront of LBF’s activities over the next few years.”

Cortina Butler, Director Literature at the British Council said:

We are very excited that Indonesia has been chosen as The London Book Fair Market Focus country for 2019 and welcome the opportunity to curate a cultural programme with partners in Indonesia and the UK at a time when there is growing interest from the international publishing community in Indonesian writing. We believe that the Market Focus creates a unique opportunity for the writing, translation, publishing and reading communities in the UK and Indonesia to build understanding and make connections with a legacy of more books translated and published in both countries.”

At The London Book Fair 2018, Indonesia (stand 5D169) will be hosting a series of events and take part in a handover event at the end of LBF from the Baltic Countries, who are this year’s Market Focus.

Indonesian author and publishing events at LBF 2018 include:

  • Introducing Indonesia and its Creative Content, 11 Apr 2018, 17:30 – 18:30

The Cross-Cultural Hub. With Ricky Joseph Pesik, Vice Chairman of BEKRAF, Indonesia’s Creative Economy Agency, John McGlynn, Lontar Foundation, Laura Prinsloo, Indonesia’s National Book Committee and Kesaint Blanc, moderated by Phillip Y. Kim Asia Literary Review.

  • Women Whose Names Were Erased, 11 Apr 2018, 13:00, Poets’ Corner

Indonesian poet Avianti Armand examines this phenomenon in her prize-winning collection of poetry, “Women Whose Names Were Erased”. In a joint-reading and discussion with Estonia’s Maarja Kangro, moderated by Peggy Hughes of the Writers’ Center Norwich.

The Indonesia stand at this year’s LBF will introduce their “17,000 islands of imagination” theme to the book fair.

Speaking about the theme, Indonesia’s National Book Committee said:

It began with imagination: the Indonesian people and the country now called “Indonesia”—a region with a multitude of ethnic-groups, each with its own history—emerged from imagination when, in the early 20th century, the peoples of this country agreed to forge a new and unified union. Indonesia was born from indigenous imagination, not from outside force or external concepts. A prominent scholar once described Indonesia as an “imagined community”. But imagination is not fantasy. Imagination has a power of its own and is source of creative energy that has shaped and will continue to shape this country’s future.”

Indonesia Market Focus 2019 will be divided into two streams: a professional programme designed to enable and enhance business opportunities, and a series of cultural events celebrating Indonesian authors and books.

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