Cairo international book fair is underway in the Egyptian capital. First established in 1969, the annual event is the second in importance only to the Frankfurt book fair in Germany and is the largest gathering of publishers, authors and readers in the Arab world. Until 4 February 650 publishers from 35 countries are present at the Cairo International Fair Grounds in Madinat Nasr. The exhibition is accompanied by a programme of presentations, exhibitions and other events. This year the guest of honour is Italy and the Italian publishing industry is represented by some 40 publishers and a special events programme put together by the ministry of foreign affairs in conjunction with the Italian Cultural Institute in Cairo. The fair attracted 1.5 million visitors in 2006.