Executives from major publishing houses of China and Cuba agreed here Friday to expand cooperation in several areas, and establish a better dialogue between both cultures and peoples through literature.
As part of the activities at the Havana 27th International Book Fair, representatives from around 60 Chinese publishing companies and their local counterparts ratified the will to expand the presence of Chinese writers in Cuba and vice versa.
Friday at the China's pavilion, Chinese and Cuban editorial groups signed 10 accords on cooperation, co-editing, and copyright transfer.
"These projects will promote the publication of books of quality and build a bridge of culture between the two cultures," said Zhou Huilin, deputy head of the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television of China.
Zhou noted that this occasion was a turning point for deeper and broader collaboration between the publishing industries of Havana and Beijing.
Cuban Vice Culture Minister Kenelma Carvajal told Xinhua that events like these were very important.
"It is very important because the millenary Chinese experience and potential in the publishing field is essential for us to learn from them, and the signed agreements will help improve the quality of books in Cuba," she said.
Iyami Palomares, director of Cuban publishing house Art and Literature, told Xinhua that the island country's public is eager to know more about what's going on in China.
"The titles we published three years ago were sold out immediately, thus I believe more Cuban readers want to know about China," she said.
"One of the most demanded titles was Lu Xun's Diary of a Madman ... and soon we will print its fourth edition," added Palomares.
Another relevant deal was the integration of the Cuban publisher New Millennium with the alliance of academic publications belonging to the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative.
The project launched in 2017 by the Renmin University of China is supported by the Publicity Department of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China and the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television.
The goal is to establish channels for bilateral or multilateral cooperation and exchange programs that will serve as an effective communication platform between Chinese culture and the world, said Li Yongqiang, director of China Renmin University Press.
Juan Rodriguez, president of the Cuban Book Institute, reiterated Cuba's stance to expand cooperation in this area, and implement the agreements achieved at the fair.
Chen Lujun, president of the Chinese Intercontinental Press, recalled that China and Cuba signed an agreement on a cooperative translation project of Chinese and Cuban Classical Works in 2011.
That was the first agreement of such reached between publishing institutions of both countries and resulted in the publication of 10 books, including six from Cuban authors translated into Mandarin and four Chinese contemporary literary works translated into Spanish.
"I hope that with the joint effort, more excellent Chinese books will reach Cuban readers while more Cuban classics will be known in China," Chen said.
The 27th Havana International Book Fair opened on Feb. 1 at the old Fortress of San Carlos de la Cabana in Havana and is considered the most important cultural event in the Caribbean nation.
It will conclude its first stage in Havana on Feb. 11 before traveling through the rest of the country until it ends on May 13 in the eastern city of Santiago de Cuba.