RIYADH: Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Farhan, the minister of culture, visited the King Fahd National Library (KFNL) in Riyadh on Sunday.
Prince Badr inspected the library’s facilities and programs to identify its future needs, in line with the ministry’s vision that places great importance on the development of public libraries.
“The library’s cultural content made it an important Saudi cultural monument,” Prince Badr said, noting that “it has had a pivotal role in supporting, preserving and documenting the Kingdom’s culture since its establishment in 1990.”
He stressed the ministry’s keenness to achieve greater success through initiatives focused on libraries and the publishing sector.
The ministry announced its vision and directions on Wednesday. They included support for public libraries to develop and transform them into beacons of culture and knowledge throughout the Kingdom.
“The transformation of arts and culture will benefit all Saudis, young and old, from every corner of our country. It will help build bridges of understanding, and for our children we will build a Saudi Arabia where their creative spirits can flourish,” Prince Badr said.
The KFNL is considered a model of the bond between the leadership and the people. It was originally established as a monument at the expense of the people to express their love and loyalty to their king, in cooperation with Riyadh’s municipality, which provided the land as well as the administrative, architectural and technical supervision.
The library aims to document Saudi intellectual output by collecting everything that is related to the Kingdom, whether published in the Kingdom or abroad.
The library houses more than 8,600 books written in Arabic and other languages and includes the national archive of historical photos, (more than 70,000 photos of kings, princes, and regions), as well as 390 paintings by Saudis and 100 rare maps of the Kingdom.