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State patronage can boost reading habits, feel publishers

State patronage can boost reading habits, feel publishers Tweet Viewd by: 24 Not rated yet 11:59 PM 5 December 2013 Korean Ambassador Chung Keejong greets HE the Minister of Culture, Arts and Heritage Dr Hamad bin Abdul Aziz al-Kuwari on his arrival at the Korean embassy pavilion. RIGHT The pavilion of the US embassy at Doha International Book Fair. The embassy is running one of the largest pavilions at the 11-day fair, which is being held at Doha Exhibition Centre. PICTURES : Thajuddin

watches By Ramesh Mathew/Staff Reporter

fake watches Avid readers among the country’s residents feel there should be significant support at the national level to sustain good reading habits as youth across the world are relying on the digital world for their reading requirements.

cheap watches A close look at the global publishing industry would reveal in no uncertain terms that it is facing severe challenges on account of changing habits of the youth and this is reflected in the sales of books in many parts of the world, including the GCC region, which even otherwise is considered “too small a market” by most major publishers.

high quality replica watches for men “Without liberal patronage from the authorities, it is extremely difficult to market titles in the entire region as books, like medicines, are among the most expensive things in the market,” said a publisher from the UAE, whose company is among the participants at the 24th Doha International Book Fair at Doha Exhibition Centre. The publisher also feels that many people would not mind spending huge sums on flashy watches, high-end mobiles, premium perfumes and cosy footwear, but hesitate to invest even comparatively smaller amounts on books.

swiss watches A UK publisher, who has his store at his country’s pavilion, said the local market is too small for companies like theirs to sustain and hence most publishers are in no hurry to commence operations in Qatar. “In the UAE, reading has caught up considerably among the residents in the past one decade and this is reflected in the market in a big way in recent years,” he said, hoping that some patronage from state institutions would contribute to improved sales in the local market in coming years.

top brand watches Interactions with some voracious local readers from different expatriate groups showed that each of them wanted to possess books but exorbitant prices were turning them away. “I spent quite a good amount on books every year while on my vacation in India. Buying books from shops there is comparatively cheap and selections at book stalls are huge compared to what we find here,” said a housewife, who was among the visitors to the fair yesterday.

Some of the readers said the best way to show one’s love, regard and respect for a person on his birthday is to present books. “It is because of such traditions that the sale of books in Western countries is not hit so badly as it has been in some other parts of the world,” said an elderly British expatriate.

Enquiries at pavilions managed by the embassies of Japan and Korea found that they are happy with the interest shown by residents to publications from their countries, which are on display. “Even though our embassy is participating in the expo for the first time, we are happy with the response of residents to our pavilion,” said South Korean Ambassador Chung Keejong.

The Japanese embassy has been taking part ever since the start of the fair. “Visitors, both locals and other residents, are making some curious enquiries about our publications,” said a staffer manning the stall.

The US embassy’s pavilion is attracting a good number of visitors.





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