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Wholesale publishing market open to HK, Macao, Taiwan
Updated: 2004-09-02 01:06

Firms from Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan will be the first to enter the wholesale publishing market on the Chinese mainland in the second half of this year, according to the country's publishing authority.

To meet the commitment China made on accessing to the World Trade Organization (WTO), the mainland's wholesale publications market -- including books, journals, magazines and newspapers -- will open to investors from overseas in December this year.

"We can give the green light to qualified companies from China's two special administrative regions of Hong Kong and Macao, and Taiwan Province to enter the market ahead of schedule," said Liu Binjie, deputy director general of the State Administration of Press and Publication (SAPP), at the 2004 Beijing International Press Forum, Wednesday.

Since the opening of the industry's retail business to foreign investment last year, the SAPP has so far approved 11 joint ventures for retail operation of publications. The chosen investors include the German media giant Bertelsmann, but most, like Hong Kong's Tom Group, are from either Hong Kong or Taiwan.

The Chinese mainland will open its publishing distribution market by the end of 2006, according to its WTO commitment. The agreement does not concern publication production, however, which is expected to remain under control.

The two-day forum, which began Tuesday, focused on the strategic management of press companies, international publication trade, hi-tech impact on the publishing industry and the industry's response to globalization.

Domestic and international publishing giants Pearson Plc, Hachette Filpacchi, Thomson Learning, Hachette Livre and China International Press Group Limited attended the forum.

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