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SPreview: South Korean Prime Minister To Open Frankfurt Book Fair

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  • SPreview: South Korean Prime Minister To Open Frankfurt Book Fair


    Deutsche Presse-Agentur
    October 17, 2005, Monday


    South Korea's prime minister, Lee Hae-chan, is to open this year's
    Frankfurt Book Fair Tuesday evening with remarks at a party attended
    by world publishing leaders.

    The attendance of Lee, 53, marks the "guest of honour" status of
    Korea this year at the world's largest book show, and his speech will
    be followed by an address from Korean poet Ko Un, one of 40 authors
    visiting Frankfurt this month to drum up book sales in Germany.

    The fair will then be formally opened with a bang of the gavel by
    Dieter Schormann, head of the fair host, the German publishers'
    and booksellers' association. The exhibition itself will not admit
    business-people and the public till Wednesday morning.

    While the display of books and the Korean cultural programme are
    mainly intended for the German public, the "real" business of the
    fair, the wheeling and dealing among world publishing companies and
    literary agents, has already been under way since last week.

    Those meetings are conducted in relative secrecy off the fair site
    at Frankfurt area hotels.

    Fair organizers say a record 7,000 exhibitors from more than 100
    nations have booked stand space this year. The fair, which runs until
    October 23, for the first time features a second-hand-book section
    this year.

    Organizers are also promoting sales of story ideas based on books
    for films and television series.

    On the final day, the fair organizers will hand the German Book Trade
    Peace Prize to Orhan Pamuk, the Turkish novelist who has been abused
    in his homeland for suggesting that Turkey re-examine its conflict
    with Armenians.

    This year's fair will also feature seminars on publishing in Arabic,
    inspired by last year's guest of honour, the Arab World. Next year's
    special guest, India, will be putting on literary events to give
    guests a foretaste of the show yet to come.