6.4 books produced per person in Turkey: Report

6.4 books produced per person in Turkey: Report

ISTANBUL - Anatolia News Agency
6.4 books produced per person in Turkey: Report An average of 6.4 books are produced per person in Turkey, with e-book sales on the rise, recent Culture and Tourism Ministry numbers showed, while revealing the downfall of bookstores nationwide.

Around 42,600 new books were published in Turkey last year, according to official numbers. One-third of those books were literary works and rhetoric, and over 14,000 of them were on social studies. Over 2,000 books were religious publications, with around the same number for history, geography and technology publications each.

The total number of books published in Turkey last year was over 480 million, with 187 million distributed for free.

The book sector in Turkey is growing 13 to 15 percent every year, according to the secretary-general of the Turkish Publishers’ Association, Kenan Kocatürk, who told Anatolia news agency that Turkey was the 15th in the world in the books business.

Production is on the rise, and the sector is growing in Turkey, Kocatürk added, with school books and course publications having a positive impact on book sales as well. Still, there is room to improve, Kocatürk said.

“Germany has a similar population to Turkey, but the sector in Germany is worth over 8 billion dollars, while in Turkey it totals up to 1.5 billion dollars,” Kocatürk said.

E-books made the highest jump numerically, with sales seeing a 100 percent increase. A total of 1,314 e-books were published in 2011, with the number rising to over 2,900 in 2012.

Bookstores, however, are slowly disappearing with only around 300 bookstores remaining in business nationwide. The free distribution of schoolbooks laid severe blows to bookstores, with 10,000 of them shutting down soon after, Kocatürk said. The increase in e-sales, now making up 10 percent of all sales, also had a negative impact on the fate of bookstores.

“The free distribution was the right thing to do, but it should not have been done bypassing the bookstores. We don’t have bookstores in some of our cities, let alone each district,” Kocatürk added.