Wellington: An international conference on literary culture will be organised in New Zealand's southern city of Dunedin to celebrate its designation as a Unesco City of Literature, Mayor Dave Cull announced Tuesday.
Dunedin, on the southeast of the South Island, is one of four newly designated cities of literature in Unesco's Creative Cities Network, after its bid was supported by sister cities, including existing City of Literature Edinburgh, City of Design Shanghai and City of Film Sydney.
"This announcement puts our city on the world map as a first-class literary city. We keep honourable company; other cities bestowed with City of Literature status include Edinburgh, Dublin, Iowa City, Melbourne, Reykjavik, Norwich and Krakow," Xinhua quoted Cull as saying in a statement.
Arts, Culture and Heritage Minister Maggie Barry congratulated Dunedin on becoming the first New Zealand city to be internationally recognized as a Unesco City of Literature.
"Dunedin represents a varied yet closely-knit creative community across literature, poetry, theatre and songwriting, among others. This is an acknowledgement of Dunedin's cultural heritage but also reflects its contemporary cultural sector," Barry said in a statement.
Unesco's Creative Cities Network was established to develop international cooperation among cities and encourage them to drive joint development partnerships.
Dunedin is New Zealand's first city to be appointed to the Creative City network.
The other three new cities of literature are Granada (Spain), Heidelberg (Germany) and Prague (Czech Republic).