WAN-IFRA calls off September 2020 Congress in Zaragoza, Spain

WAN-IFRA World News Media Congress 2021 in Taiwan

The World News Media Congress cancelled in 2020, gets over 800 participants each year.
The World News Media Congress cancelled in 2020, gets over 800 participants each year.

Due to the continued uncertainties and travel constraints around the Covid-19 pandemic, WAN-IFRA is calling off the World News Media Congress, which was initially planned for Zaragoza, Spain, in September 2020. Meanwhile, it has named Taiwan as its venue for the 2021 Congress and rescheduled the 2022 Congress in Zaragoza.

WAN-IFRA CEO Vincent Peyregne said, “It is with a great deal of disappointment that we have had to cancel this year’s World Congress. Two years from now, we will make good our promise to take the World News Media Congress again to Zaragoza in 2022.” Next year, the world’s press is invited to Taipei, Taiwan, from 23 to 25 June 2021, to attend the 73rd World News Media Congress including the 28th World Editors Forum and the 5th Women in News Summit.

“I am delighted to be able to announce today the return of the World Congress to Asia, eight years after its historic landmark in Bangkok,” said Peyregne. ”2021 will be a pivotal year at a time when the pandemic has undercut the predictability of normal life, and news publishers are seeking answers to vital, even existential issues as they adjust their strategies, evolve, and transform. At some point, Covid-19 will be vanquished, news enterprises will bounce back. But it won’t be a return to normal. Getting to normal is not so much about getting back the old normality as it is about getting back the ability to know what is going to happen tomorrow. Taipei will, therefore, be a crucial and timely meeting point. The 2021 Congress will be a unique occasion to capture the lessons of the pandemic, what it means for our relationship with the public, the new economic outlook for the sector, and reaffirm the role of a free press in keeping our societies well informed and bringing our communities together.”

WAN-IFRA will organize the 2021 event in partnership with UDN (United Daily News Group), one of Taiwan’s leading media and technology companies. The events will take place at Taipei’s Nangang Exhibition Center.

“We are extremely excited to be able to host the World News Media Congress 2021 in Taipei! It has been eight years since the Congress was last held in Asia. In 2020, we all experienced dramatic changes in the news industry, and our life and work models were heavily impacted by the pandemic. Taipei 2021 will be a great opportunity to hold conversations and reflect on new paths for quality journalism. We look forward to seeing you in free, democratic, and beautiful Taiwan!” – Duncan Wang, chairman, United Daily News Group.

2023 promises an interesting ride for print in India

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. While the print and packaging industries have been resilient in the past 33 months since the pandemic lockdown of 25 March 2020, the commercial printing and newspaper industries have yet to recover their pre-Covid trajectory.

The fragmented commercial printing industry faces substantial challenges as does the newspaper industry. While digital short-run printing and the signage industry seem to be recovering a bit faster, ultimately their growth will also be moderated by the progress of the overall economy. On the other hand book printing exports are doing well but they too face several supply-chain and logistics challenges.

The price of publication papers including newsprint has been high in the past year while availability is diminished by several mills shutting down their publication paper and newsprint machines in the past four years. Indian paper mills are also exporting many types of paper and have raised prices for Indian printers. To some extent, this has helped in the recovery of the digital printing industry with its on-demand short-run and low-wastage paradigm.

Ultimately digital print and other digital channels 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. For instance, there is no alternative to a rise in textbook consumption but this segment will only reach normality in the next financial year beginning on 1 April 2023.

Thus while the new normal is a moving target and many commercial printers look to diversification, we believe that our target audiences may shift and change. Like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

Our 2023 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock and reconnect with your potential markets and customers. Print is the glue for the growth of liberal education, new industry, and an emerging economy. We seek your participation in what promises to be an interesting ride.

– Naresh Khanna

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