India Guest of Honor at Paris book fair for the second time

Livre Paris: 20-23 March 2020

Paris Book Fair 2020
Paris Book Fair 2020

The Indian book industry will be the Guest of Honor at this year’s Paris book fair. The 40th edition of Livre Paris will be held on four days from 20-23 March 2020. It is open to the general public in the afternoons, while the mornings are reserved for professionals. With an average of 1,200 exhibitors and 160,000 visitors, it is the largest French language book fair for book professionals from Europe, Africa and Canada. India had already been the Guest of Honor at this fair in 2007.

The invitation agreement had been signed in the presence of a dozen French publishers at last year’s Jaipur Literature Festival between the French Ambassador in India, Alexandre Ziegler and the National Book Trust. At the occasion, the French Ambassador pointed out that the Indian book industry’s presence in Paris “will be an excellent opportunity to increase the number of translations and releases of Indian books by French publishers and to construct a dynamic network between the French and Indian publishing industries.” The French book industry will in turn be the focal point at the New Delhi International Book Fair in 2022.

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

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– Naresh Khanna

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