Publishing Industry Develops Rapidly

China has seen a marked development in its publishing industry in the 1996-2000 period, with the publication of a large number of well accepted, high quality cultural products.

In the year 1999 alone, books published reached an equivalent of 39.14 billion printed sheets, up 23.5 percent from 1995, with book sales amounting to 7.33 billion volumes, up 9.7 percent.

Periodicals published that year was equal to 9.68 billion printed sheets, growing by 44.4 percent from 1995, according to an official with the State Development Planning Commission.

Meanwhile, audio-visual products and e-publications are developing rapidly and becoming a major player in the industry.

By the end of 1999, China had had 527 publishing houses and some 130 disc production lines, the official said. Within the five-year period, a large amount of top-grade books, films, TV series, songs and operas were produced.

By the year 1998, China had over 45,000 cultural institutions nationwide, and 2,731 public libraries above the county level, which provide 385 million books to readers.

More than 5,000 exhibitions were held annually in the 1,331 museums across the country, attracting some 100 million viewers.

According to the official, China has been exerting continuous efforts to curb the production, sale and circulation of pornographic publications and has started a special campaign to crack down on Falun Gong publications, and has achieved a good result.

(People's Daily 10/03/2000)