Book fair at­tracts more dig­i­tal and for­eign pub­lish­ers

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - LIFE / READING - By MEI JIA mei­jia@chi­

The 20th Bei­jing In­ter­na­tional Book Fair will kick off at the new China In­ter­na­tional Ex­hi­bi­tion Cen­ter in Bei­jing’s Shunyi dis­trict on Wed­nes­day. This year, Saudi Ara­bia is the coun­try of honor.

One of the world’s key book gath­er­ings, the 2013 BIBF has al­ready at­tracted 2,267 book/ pub­lish­ing or­ga­ni­za­tions from 76 coun­tries and re­gions. They will share an ar­ray of pub­li­ca­tions, in print or dig­i­tal.

More dig­i­tal pub­lish­ers are join­ing the book fair. They will com­mu­ni­cate with their in­ter­na­tional peers on var­i­ous fo­rums.

Chil­dren’s read­ing events will also be a fo­cus at the book fair, as the Chi­nese mar­ket is con­sid­ered to have high po­ten­tial in chil­dren’s pub­lish­ing busi­ness.

One of the or­ga­niz­ers, Zhang Jichen with China National Pub­li­ca­tions Im­port and Ex­port (Group) Cor­po­ra­tion, says more mid­dle- and small-sized pub­lish­ers from abroad are at­tracted to join the fair this year, an in­crease of 8 per­cent com­pared with 2012.

“It shows Chi­nese books’ in­creas­ing in­ter­na­tional in­flu­ence, along with Chi­nese mar­ket’s grow­ing at­trac­tion,” Zhang says.

Copy­right trade will con­tinue to play a key role in the event. In 2012, 3,298 con­tracts on copy­right trade were made dur­ing the book fair, mak­ing up 24 per­cent of the year’s to­tal amount, ac­cord­ing to Wang Hua, an of­fi­cial at the State Gen­eral Ad­min­is­tra­tion of Press and Pub­li­ca­tion, Ra­dio, Film and Tele­vi­sion.

Chi­nese books that at­tract for­eign read­ers in­clude lit­er­a­ture, tra­di­tional cul­ture, science and the coun­try’s mode of de­vel­op­ment.

With “books, hu­man be­ing’s royal friend” as the theme, Cul­tural At­tache of the Royal Em­bassy of Saudi Ara­bia Saleh Alqa­soumi says they will present the col­or­ful as­pects of Saudi Ara­bian cul­ture, in­clud­ing ar­chi­tec­ture, arts and cos­tumes.

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