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Children’s book sales up 15% in China; publishers warn of overcrowded market

In China, sales of children’s books are up 15% year-on-year in value terms in 2016 to date, on the back of double-digit surges in recent years, reports the Bookseller. Book sales data company Open Book estimates the 2015 market was valued at CN¥13bn (A$2.52bn) as both state-owned and private publishers enter the market. Open Book general manager Yang Lei told the Shanghai International Children’s Book Fair of the 578 state-owned publishing houses, 547 have children’s divisions. ‘Maybe eight years ago, only 300 did children’s publishing,’ said Yang. ‘Because of the speed and scale that the children’s market is growing [at], there is short-term profit and everyone wants to jump on. With the relaxing of the one child policy in China, everyone thinks the future is strong and wants to invest in it.’ Others in the industry cautioned over the rapid growth, fearing it could lead to a fall in quality and an overcrowded market. Shanghai Century Publishing Group vice-president Kan Ninghui said that although the past 10 years ‘have been the golden years’, there ‘is mass production now, and so much [output] that’s identical, without added value’. ‘The past decade has seen children’s publishing developing hugely, and it could be overworking the publishing industry with everyone piling in,’ said Kan. ‘The next 10 years, if we follow current trends, could see huge problems.’



Category: International news Junior