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Publishing industry still to overcome shock of D-effect

India’s otherwise booming publishing industry is now undergoing a crucial phase as sales have dropped by almost 30-60 per cent since November 8, after the government’s decision to invalidate the 500- and 1,000-rupee notes. The Nielsen Book Report had estimated the Indian book market in 2015 to be worth $3.9 billion and growing by around 20 percent a year. This includes imports, which are particularly important in a market where 55 per cent of all sales (and about 90 per cent of all professional titles sold) are English language titles.

Thomas Abraham, of Hachette India, said that the drop in sales may be attributed to the fact that books are not regarded as a primary necessity. “There have been varying reports of sales drops from 30 per cent to 60 per cent in book retail stores. And this despite most bookstores having a large chunk of credit card customers,” he said, adding: “So this is more the shock effect of general confidence and a drop in people going out to shop.”

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