IFLA chooses Qatar National Library as Regional Office for MENA region

IFLA chooses Qatar National Library as Regional Office for MENA region

QLNews
By QLNews

In a historic first, the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) chose Qatar National Library (QNL) as THE Regional Office for the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region until 2026.

The decision was ratified during the 88th IFLA General Conference and Assembly in Rotterdam, The Netherlands, recently.

Qatar thus joined an elite list of three other libraries that host IFLA’s Regional Offices — the National Library Board in Singapore (Asia and Oceania), the University of South Africa (Africa) and the Library of Congress of the Nation in Argentina (Latin America and The Caribbean).

The announcement came as a testament to QNL’s achievements over the years — providing insights into questions of equal access, creativity, and cultural development. It also helped further cement the Library’s position as a leading cultural institution.

“We’re truly privileged to have been chosen as the first IFLA Regional Office for the MENA region. We see this as an acknowledgement of our continuous efforts in advocating for the work of libraries in the region. Together with IFLA, we’re excited to collaborate with regional colleagues to strengthen the library field,” said QNL Executive Director Tan Huism.

Abeer Al Kuwari, QNL’s Director of Research and Learning, added, “This designation is not just an honour, but a responsibility that we embrace with great enthusiasm. It highlights the Library’s commitment to fostering cultural exchange, creativity, and inclusivity. Our collaboration with IFLA allows us to take these initiatives to a regional level, aligning with our broader goals for positive societal impact.”

IFLA’s Regional Offices work with the organisation’s Headquarters to support IFLA’s outreach in their region as well as support Members’ own engagement in IFLA’s work.

They also help in facilitating the dissemination of information and in helping organise events.

IFLA said QNL’s involvement would contribute to bolstering regional activities and strengthening connections with key stakeholders across the MENA region.

Since its inauguration in 2017, QNL has been instrumental in promoting international cultural exchange, and deepening understanding between nations and their citizens. Its track record includes organizing over 3,000 events attended by more than 150,000 individuals.

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