The Islamic World Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ICESCO) took part in the regional cultural talks for the Arab region, in preparation for the UNESCO World Conference for Cultural Policies in Mexico (Mondiacult), to be held next September in Mexico. The two-day event saw the participation of Arab countries’ ministers of culture in addition to representatives of international and regional organizations.
Dr. Mohamed Zinelabidine, Head of the Sector of Culture and Communication, represented ICESCO in the talks, held via videoconference, Thursday, February 17, 2022. Dr. Zinelabidine reaffirmed that ICESCO anticipates new cultural goals which it works on achieving for the benefit of the Islamic world, starting with the creation of ICESCO’s International Center for Comprehensive Policies and Cultural Development. He further explained that the Center aims to convince the Member States the significance of raising the budget of culture ministries to reach 1% of the global budget, increasing the productivity of the sectors of comprehensive development at the national and regional levels, and promoting the sector of heritage and antiquity.
The cultural official stated that ICESCO calls for developing the resources and supporting the budgets of social security funds for the benefit of creators and cultural intellects to better their living conditions and enable them to deal with their social and health situations, noting that there is a need to pass bills focusing on artists and art professions and allocate more funds to support literary, intellectual and artistic copyrights.
Dr. Zinelabidine stated that ICESCO proposes that each country funds about 1,000 projects from among youth initiatives and startups, as part of their support for cultural investment in the fields of digital economy, creative industries and cultural and social solidarity economy. He also stressed the need to reform cultural policies to foster cultural gross domestic product in such a way as to consolidate the role of culture on sustainable development, expand the resources of arts, handicrafts and traditional industries, the book and audiovisual industry, cultural and creative industries and the cultural and social solidarity economy.