The Media Regulatory Office of the Ministry of Culture and Youth today announced a decision to resume the distribution of newspapers and magazines across the UAE’s public places, provided it is done in full compliance with precautionary and preventative measures regarding Covid 19.
The decision follows a series of meetings held by the office with major newspaper and magazine distribution companies in the country, with the aim of reviewing the procedures for circulating publications of all kinds. The meetings included discussions on drawing up a roadmap for lifting restrictions on the distribution of material and assisting the UAE’s publishing sector to return to normalcy as the pandemic eases.
The decision from the Ministry of Culture and Youth falls within the framework of the UAE’s integrated strategy towards driving phased recovery in vital economic sectors, in addition to supporting the publishing sector in its role of enriching culture and knowledge in society. It will see the recommencement of the distribution of newspapers and magazines in public places throughout the country, including restaurants, cafés, hotels and duty-free stores.
Dr Rashid Khalfan Al Nuaimi, Executive Director of the Media Regulatory Office at the Ministry of Culture and Youth, said: “The decision to lift distribution restrictions for newspapers and magazines in public places is in line with the national strategy towards promoting the recovery of all sectors, including the media, from the repercussions of the pandemic.”
He added: “I would like to commend the spirit of cooperation and support that we received from the distribution companies during the first period of the Covid 19 outbreak. Today marks an important milestone in overcoming the pandemic and continuing the process of cultural development and enriching knowledge in Emirati society. In cooperation with our partners, we are delighted to resume the distribution of publications in public places and to play an essential role in revitalising this important sector.”
Al-Nuaimi pointed out that the newspapers, magazines and publications sector witnessed remarkable growth during the three years before the outbreak of the pandemic, with the number of periodicals distributed during 2017-2019 reaching 107,808. Out of this number 8,984 titles covered the cultural and art sectors. Al Nuaimi highlighted that these publications comprised titles in several languages, the most prominent of which were English and Arabic, with other languages including French, German, Hindi, Italian and Chinese.