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Ahmed Al Hamdan, President of the Saudi Publishers Association (SPA) underlined that the KSA ranks #1 in the publishing business in the Middle East, with investments in the local sector valued at over ASR 5 billion annually, comprising 400 publishing houses and 4000 personnel in printing, publishing, distribution and selling.
In an exclusive interview with Saudi daily newspaper, Al Eqtisadiah (The Economy), Al Hamdan pointed out that the number of high-production-volume publishing houses that publish 500 titles is 100, while the rest publish between one and five books each year. He noted that the most fundamental challenges that face the book industry in KSA are distribution difficulties and electronic piracy.
The SPA president observed that some publishing houses produce quality books made with ink and papers imported from Japan, Russia and Germany, which explains the high cost of Saudi books in the Kingdom compared to other books in Egypt and Lebanon, which are made using local raw materials.