Publishers search for aid for print media

“The print media marketplace wants the elimination of customs obligation on imported newsprint. This will help manage costs,” Jayant Mammen Mathew, govt editor of Malayala Manorama Co., told Mint.

By Shuchi Bansal, Lata Jha, New Delhi

Up to date ON JAN 18, 2021 06:59 AM IST

The Indian Newspaper Modern society (INS) has asked Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman to support print media tide more than the covid-induced crisis by taking away customs duty on newsprint imports and a stimulus deal for the business, including releasing govt adverts to publications at prices that are 50% larger.

The INS is an impartial overall body that protects the pursuits and liberty of newspapers and periodicals in India. L Adimoolam, president of INS, who satisfied the finance minister past 7 days, mentioned that imported newsprint did not bring in any duty for 65 years. “When the Centre imposed 10% customs obligation on imported newsprint, we requested for a reduction and it was slashed to 5% past year. We are now looking for removing of this obligation,” stated Adimoolam, the publisher of English journal Overall health and The Antiseptic, a sister worry of Dinamalar, a Tamil newspaper.

In a letter to Sitharaman, INS stated that the market is reeling less than a crisis as both of those advertisement and circulation earnings have dropped substantially.

“To cut down distribution charges, most have stopped sending newspapers to rural locations the place there are much less than 50 copies (sold). The rural spots are becoming deprived of genuine news and they are pushed to rely on the phony information that is widely circulated in social media,” it said, including that newsprint prices have absent up 20% in the previous three months.

Yet another raise of 10-15% is on the anvil next month. Advisor KPMG has estimated that print media revenues will contract by 38% in FY21, in comparison with the preceding fiscal, buffeted by Covid-connected financial contraction.

“The print media field wants the removal of customs obligation on imported newsprint. This will aid handle costs,” Jayant Mammen Mathew, executive editor of Malayala Manorama Co., explained to Mint.

Mohit Jain, govt director at Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd and vice-president of INS, claimed that the area mills do not manufacture adequate newsprint and its good quality does not match that of imported newsprint so, newsprint of 42gsm and under really should be exempted from anti-dumping obligation as it is not produced in India.

The INS take note also provides that the government should really contemplate mountaineering the premiums it pays for adverts (by way of the Directorate of Advertising and marketing and Visible Publicity) by 50%.