The Calabrese city of Vibo Valentia has been named the first Italian Book Capital, for 2021, Culture Minister of Italy Dario Franceschini announced on Friday 07 May 2021. Vibo Valentia beat the cities of: Ariano Arpino, Caltanisetta, Campobasso, Cesena and Pontremoli.

The Calabrese city won because “it has distinguished itself for the quality of the initiatives presented, set out clearly, in which rigour and enthusiasm have been combined,” Dario Franceschini said. He said “the winning idea had been “to make books enter people’s lives in a very powerful way. We are certain that this concept will be translated into virtuous behaviour destined to leave a lasting mark”.

Vibo Valentia’s Mayor Maria Limardo said “I have never been so excited. We are making great progress to redeem our community, because we have always come last in all the standings and we have to be proud that we are now top because our city is a beautiful city, rich, full of heritage, full of extraordinary beauty, but above all is full of so many beautiful people who read, who write, who are aware and identify with their home town”.