The 50th edition of the Sofia International Book Fair kicked off at the National Palace of Culture in Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria on Tuesday with a rich selection of Chinese books on display.
Some 300 Chinese books are exhibited at the booth of CBT China Book Trading GmbH, a subsidiary of China International Communications Group.
Bao Jianguo, business director at CBT, told reporters that the company is participating in the six-day event for the first time this year, which involved more than 170 publishers.
China and Bulgaria have had a good relationship for a long time, and it is important for the peoples of both countries to understand each other, Bao said. “We would like to take this opportunity to enhance the communication and cultural exchanges between the two countries, and hope to build connections for future cooperation,” he said.
Chinese books translated into Bulgarian are also on display at the booth of Bulgarian publishing house Iztok-Zapad (East-West). Among them are classics, such as Cao Xueqin’s Dream of the Red Chamber and The Book of Songs: The Ancient Chinese Classic of Poetry, as well as Illustrated Myths and Legends of China and An Illustrated Brief History of China: Culture, Religion, Art, Invention along with Chinese language textbooks for Bulgarians.
Luben Kozarev, Iztok-Zapad’s founder and president, told reporters that his company presents nearly 30 Chinese titles at the event. Since 2003, his company has published almost 100 Chinese books in Bulgarian.
According to Kozarev, Bulgarians are interested in Chinese literature. “There is great interest in everything related to China,” he said.
This interest is driven by several factors, such as the changing world situation as China has become “an increasingly prominent global leader,” Kozarev said. “People are interested in Chinese culture, Chinese language,” he said.
Gabriela Nikolova, a student at Sofia University, was the first visitor to stop and leaf through books at the CBT booth together with her friends right after the fair opened on Tuesday morning. She said she knew that China has a rich culture. “When I have more time, I would delve more into Chinese culture and literature,” she said.