China / Society

Sino-Singapore publishing partnership achieved

By Huang Ying ( Updated: 2012-04-25 21:56

China and Singapore signed four publishing agreements on April 25, the first day of the China-Singapore Publishing Symposium.

Five hundred Singapore titles will be digitized into e-books and distributed in China at the end of 2013, according to a Memorandum of Understanding between China's Jiangxi Fine Arts Publishing and Singapore's Pan Asia Publishing Pte Ltd and People Trends Pte Ltd. The 500 Singaporean publications range from children's fiction, finance and investment to travel and entertainment.

"There is plenty of untapped potential for made-in-Singapore content among Chinese readers, given our shared cultural ties and the sheer size of China's market," said Catherine Khoo, social sub-committee chairperson of Singapore Book Publishers Association.

With more emphasis on Mandarin among Singaporeans in recent years, the demand for Chinese books has been on the rise, she said.

Singapore readers will have access to 1,000 Chinese titles with the licensing agreement between two Chinese publishers — Hot Rightson Publishing Company and Beijing HengYuanFanShu Publishing Company — and Singapore's Eonboo Publishing. These books cover a variety of themes. Eonboo will distribute them to the Southeast Asia market through Singapore.

The other two agreements are the co-production of the Singaporean title King Arthur's Legacy by Jiangxi Fine Arts Publishing and Eonboo Publishing, and the licensing of both print and digital copyrights of Singapore's popular children's book A Diary of Amos Lee.

"The collaboration enables Singaporean and Chinese publishers to rise on the growing appetite for e-books and digital content among Asian consumers, and it also creates new markets for the two countries' publication," said Thomas Lim, director of Interactive Media, Games and Publishing at Media Development Authority of Singapore.

According to a report on global entertainment and media released by Price Waterhouse Coopers, the total electronic consumer and educational book market in Singapore is expected to grow from $2 million in 2010 to $22 million in 2015.

The Singaporean government started a three-year pilot program to accelerate the digitalization of print content among five to 10 local publishing houses at the end of last year to boost the transformation of its publishing industry, Lim said.

More cooperation between the countries is expected.

"We are in talks with potential Singaporean partners concerning publishing as well, although no specific agreement have been reached," said Gao Haichao, director of Beijing Editorial Department at Xinhua Winshare Publishing and Media Co Ltd.

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