16th Arab Media Forum kicks off, titled ‘Media…Changes in Industry’

Information Minister and State Minister for Youth Affairs Mohammad Al-Jabri honors Oman’s Minister of Information Abdulmunem Al-Hosni.

KUWAIT: Journalists and media persons from various Arab countries visited Kuwait to participate in the 16th edition of the Arab Media Forum held on April 21 and 22 under the patronage of His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah. The forum was titled ‘Media…Changes in Industry.’

During the opening ceremony, Information Minister and State Minister for Youth Affairs Mohammad Al-Jabri said investing in the media industry has become more important in the present time as it represents investing in building human thought and a responsible generation, far from fanatic and terrorist ideologies.

“Kuwait realizes the importance of media in highlighting numerous challenges facing our countries and youth. The rapid development of the media and communications industry has brought about new dangerous electronic media, which is far reaching, effective and spreading. Social media has allowed nonprofessionals to become journalists, and anybody can express his opinion,” added Jabri.

Jabri thanked organizers for selecting Oman as the guest of honor as well as inviting 150 Arab university students to participate in the forum’s sessions. “The government and private media should contribute in developing the media industry through training journalists. This expresses the cultural role of Kuwait,” he pointed out.

Arab League Assistant Secretary General and Head of Communications and Media Bader Aldeen Alali noted that the Arab Media Forum has been cooperating with the Secretariat General of the Arab League since 2006. “Today we are discussing important issues on the future of Arab media at a time of this huge technological revolution that has changed the forms of traditional media all over the world. This has led to spreading rumors and wrong information, which is one of the biggest challenges facing the different Arab media. So we should work on the founding of a new generation of journalists to beat these challenges,” he explained.

Arab Media Forum Secretary General Madhi Al-Khamees said participants will be discussing the media industry and how it affects daily life. “I hope this forum will bring solutions to the real challenges facing our profession, and will be able to develop media and protect its tools. Today is a great opportunity to have decision makers in the media field from different Arab countries participate in this forum and listen to our opinions and concerns,” he said.

Oman’s Minister of Information Abdulmunem Al-Hosni thanked Kuwait for the invitation, saying modern technology is a challenge to traditional media. “Any human being can become a journalist now. We should asses the events before making them public. An elementary school student can distort the facts because of the vast space of media,” he noted. The ceremony concluded with awarding media personalities including journalists, actors, athletes and other media officials.

By Nawara Fattahova