Minister: Culture Ministry maintains efforts to enlighten citizens and raise awareness despite virus outbreak
Saturday، 20 June 2020 - 01:35 AM
Culture Minister Inas Abdel Dayem said that her ministry maintains efforts to deliver its message which is aimed at enlightening and raising awareness of citizens despite the extraordinary circumstances in the country amid the spread of the novel coronavirus pandemic.
In an interview with MENA Board Chairman and Editor-in-Chief Ali Hassan, the minister highlighted President Abdel Fattah El Sisi’s declaration of 2020 as a year of culture and awareness, as part of which Port Said governorate was announced as the capital of the Egyptian culture for 2020.
The minister noted that her ministry has prepared a unique program for this year, covering all governorates and including many artistic, intellectual and cultural activities.
She explained that these events have been postponed to the post-coronavirus period upon directives from the prime minister due to the current circumstances.
The Culture Ministry is currently offering its cultural and artistic programs via social media and YouTube so as to assume its role towards the citizens using all its potentials and innovative ideas, she said.
The culture sector topped sectors that have been affected by the COVID-19 outbreak as many precautionary measures were taken to curb the virus spread through halting all cultural events and activities at the regional and international levels.
The ministry is working to upgrade cultural facilities to be able to offer the best services for people who will be interested in visiting these places after the end of the coronavirus crisis, she said.
She added that the ministry has also worked to adopt new tools to make its treasured, plentiful cultural content available for those who are interested in it.
She underlined that her ministry started implementing its strategy to use technology and artificial intelligence to serve the cultural industry, therefore it launched its online initiative "Stay At Home... Culture Between Your Hands” on March 24, 2020 to deliver all kinds of arts to the audience as they stay at home to protect themselves from the harmful virus.
The ministry’s YouTube channel is attracting the audience via offering diverse cultural content as part of the initiative, she said, adding that the channel has seen 27.27 million viewers and more than 104,000 subscribers.
In addition, virtual visits to several museums and exhibitions saw a somewhat good turnout with 2,428 visits registered so far.
Cultural and awareness-raising lectures will be presented online as part of the initiative, she said.
She pointed out that things will be changed as the country starts to reopen cultural activities, noting for instance that seats will be rearranged at cinema halls and theaters in the coming period so that the halls’ capacity would be reduced to one third.
All facilities will be fully disinfected before and after the shows and staffs will be reduced to the third with all precautionary measures to be taken, she said.
Coordination is under way with the Arab countries to address the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic on the Arab culture, she noted, citing her chairmanship of the extraordinary virtual meeting of the ministers responsible for cultural affairs in the Arab world, which was called for by the ALECSO to discuss the effect of the COVID-19 crisis on the cultural sector in the Arab countries.