Henk Pröpper, Director Dutch Foundation for Literature
A word of thanks in advance
Now that the fair is just round the corner, this is perhaps the moment to thank all our Chinese counterparts for their efforts and exertions to promote Dutch books in recent years. This applies to the organisers of the BIBF, who quite some years ago identified the Netherlands as an important book country - our selection is thanks to their belief in our capacity.
Writers, translators, interpreters are the true bridge between cultures.
This also applies to the Chinese ministries involved, which have been responsive to our wish to make a strong presentation in terms of content, and not least because of their respect for the Dutch book industry, from both a historical and modern perspective. And it specially applies to the many publishers and editors with whom we have established an association over the past few years. We have visited numerous Chinese cities to meet them and talk with them about literature and the many surprising turns and trends in the book business. Many of them have also visited the Netherlands to get to know something about the Dutch literary infrastructure and its world of writers. And finally it applies to the writers and journalists that we got to know and that form a significant element of our programme. Writers, translators, interpreters are the true bridge between cultures - it is their words that set worlds in motion.