Tirana Book Fair to hold 18th edition amid concern over drastic decline in sales

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times October 30, 2015 11:32

Tirana Book Fair to hold 18th edition amid concern over drastic decline in sales

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  • Petrit Ymeri, the head of the Albanian Association of Publishers, says the economic crisis Albania has been facing in the past years has also affected book sales and led to the closure of dozens of bookshops and fewer new publications

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panairTIRANA, Oct. 28 - A hundred publishers will participate in the 18th edition of the Tirana Book Fair, the largest event bringing together Albanian publishers who have expressed rising concern over a sharp drop in sales this year.

Albania's Association of Publishers, which is the organizer of the event, says publishers from Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro and the Diaspora will participate in this major event which brings together writers, readers, translators and the media to further promote traditional reading in the digital era.

This year's fair scheduled to be held at the Palace of Congresses from November 11 to 15 will focus on the future of digital books in Albania.

Organizers are planning to award a special translation prize in honor of the 50th death anniversary of Fan Noli, an outstanding leader of the Albanian-American community, but also a pre-eminent and multi-talented figure of Albanian literature, culture, religious life and politics.

Petrit Ymeri, the head of the Albanian Association of Publishers, says the economic crisis Albania has been facing in the past years has also affected book sales and led to the closure of dozens of bookshops and fewer new publications.

“Book sales during this year have dropped by 40 percent. Last year, the decrease in book sales was between 20 to 25 percent, according to contacts with different bookshops and publishing houses," Ymeri has told local media.

“Last summer was very embarrassing for books. We raised the alarm over this expected situation three to four years ago. The situation has aggravated because of economic difficulties. In the past couple of years, beyond the increase of theatrical and image activities, there have been no major changes regarding the support, structure or book infrastructure," he says.

The Tirana Times publishing house and the Albanian Institute for International Studies (AIIS) will also be participating in the book fair with a joint stand in the first floor of the exhibition area with dozens of book titles featuring Albanian authors such as Sabri Godo, Prec Zogaj and winners of Nobel Prize for Literature such as Samuel Beckett and Herta Muller. Several publications by the AIIS Library of International Relations & History from Bernd Fischer, Francis Fukuyama, Dominique Moisi etc will be featured in the stand.

In last year's edition, internationally renowned Albanian author Ismail Kadare was handed the special Jeronim De Rada award. The perennial Albanian nominee for the Nobel Prize in Literature was awarded the special prize on the 200th birth anniversary of De Rada, who is not only the best known writer of Italian- Albanian literature but also the foremost figure of the Albanian nationalist movement in nineteenth-century Italy.

Some 80,000 people visited last year's edition buying books at a discount of 10 to 30 percent.

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times October 30, 2015 11:32