Qatar will host a regional conference on cultural diversity on September 2 , with participation of representatives of member states in the Asia Co-operation Dialogue (ACD).
The two-day conference will be held under the auspices of HE the Minister of Culture and Sports Salah bin Ghanim al-Ali, and is organised by the Ministry of Culture and Sports in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the ACD.
In a press statement Monday, the Ministry of Culture and Sports stressed the importance of the conference, which emphasises the role of Qatar as a reliable partner at the international level as well as its role as chair of ACD this year. It demonstrates the importance of cultural interactions in strengthening relations between Qatar and member states.
To be held under the slogan 'Culture is a bridge for dialogue and understanding', the meeting will include a number of discussion sessions and working papers, as well as remarks and speeches by senior officials on the importance of culture as an important bridge of communication between peoples. It will see the participation of experts from various institutions in a number of countries as well as a group of representatives of the ACD countries, and ACD Secretary-General Pornchai Danvivathana.
The first day's sessions will discuss cultural diversity and its impact on Asian societies, while the second session will tackle experiences of Asian countries in the cultural diversity field. A variety of cultural experiences from Japan, Qatar and Oman will be presented. Day Two will discuss issues related to communication and rapprochement between the cultures of Asian countries.
Regarding the activities of Qatar, the chair of this session of the ACD, HE Khalid bin Ibrahim bin Abdulrahman al-Hamar, Director of the Asian Affairs Department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said the conference is one of the key activities that comes within the context of Qatar's assumption of the chairmanship of the ACD in 2019. Qatar's keenness on organising such events and activities stems from the special attention it attaches to the ACD system as it is the largest bloc within the framework of the Asian continent, he said.
HE al-Hamar stressed Qatar's keenness to advance the objectives of dialogue to work together, to promote constructive and fruitful interaction between the countries of Asia in all areas of co-operation and to open doors for finding common opportunities that will help to improve the standard of living of peoples.
He pointed out that the ACD is an important platform that seeks to create an Asian community capable of interacting with the rest of the world and contribute to promoting peace and well-being, which are in line with the fundamental pillars of the Qatar National Vision 2030.
Director of the Culture and Arts Department of the Ministry of Culture and Sports and member of the organising committee Hamad al-Zakiba said this conference aims to promote cultural diversity, which occupies a central place in human rights as a mark of common humanity and recognition of multiple identities, through the use of language, education and advanced means of communication to reduce dialogue obstacles.
It also aims to discuss ways of developing investment in cultural diversity, hoping to achieve beneficial results for all through activating joint programmes to host cultural and artistic activities among participating countries.
He said the conference will introduce the participants to the cultural and civilisational landscape of Qatar and encourage cultural tourism and the related economic opportunities.
ACD was inaugurated in June 2002 in Cha-Am, Thailand, where 18 Asian foreign ministers met together for the first time. ACD Ministers have met annually at the ACD Ministerial Meetings to discuss ACD developments, issues of regional cooperation and ways to enhance and solidify Asian unity.
On the projects dimension, currently, many countries have proposed to be prime movers in 20 areas of co-operation, such as energy, agriculture, biotechnology, tourism, poverty alleviation, IT development, e-education and finance.