- Published: 12.11.2019.
42nd Interliber book fair opens
Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic on Tuesday opened the 42nd Interliber book and teaching aids fair, which lasts until November 17 and features more than 380 exhibitors from 13 countries.
Addressing the opening ceremony, PM Plenkovic said that the situation in the publishing industry had stabilised and that time had proved concern for the future of books unfounded.
Along with the 42nd Interliber, also opened on Tuesday was the 8th Reboot Infogamer fair.
Plenkovic recalled that at the start of the incumbent government's term, the budget of the Culture Ministry accounted for only 0.56% of the state budget and that the government had set as one of its priorities a steady increase in the culture budget, a reform of the system, a more ambitious use of European funds, and the introduction of new incentives for different areas of culture and the arts.
"This year, the Culture Ministry's budget has reached 1% of the state budget, which means that over the past three years we have practically doubled the budget for culture," Plenkovic said.
He said that one of the government's first tasks had been to launch joint action by the state and the publishing sector in dealing with numerous problems of the sector, from financial instability to huge losses incurred by bookshops.
"An entire set of measures was undertaken in the last three years in continual dialogue with all stakeholders in the bookshop chain. I'm glad to say that we have successfully stabilised the situation and created conditions to reverse trends," Plenkovic said.
He stressed that the government wanted to "define long-term solutions ensuring positive changes of business practices and developing a new, long-term and sustainable attitude to culture and literature."
Culture Minister Nina Obuljen Korzonek expressed satisfaction that the situation in the publishing sector had stabilised, as evidenced by this year's Interliber, which features numerous new publications and expects a large number of visitors.
Dina Tomsic, director of the Zagreb Trade Fair Centre, the venue of Interliber, said that over the past period of more than four decades Interliber had become a national platform for the promotion of reading, noting that the number of exhibitors this year was 18% higher than in 2018.