In 2019, the total sales of the book market were estimated at 55.5 billion HUF by the Hungarian Publishers and Booksellers Association, practically the same as a year earlier. In 2020 the preliminary figures suggest some decline but 2021 promises some growth once more. The average number of copies sold per title keeps decreasing and has slipped below 2000 copies.
The book culture of the country has particularly suffered by the cancellation of the International Book Festival and the Book Week. The latter is an open-air event with a hundred years’ tradition; in 2021 it was finally arranged at a rescheduled date.
Table 2: Number of published titles, 1990-2020
|Year||Number of titles||Of which textbooks||Million copies||Of which textbooks|
|1990||8 322||1 230||125.7||22.2|
|2000||9 592||1 595||36.9||11.1|
|2010||12 997||2 135||34.4||11.8|
|2019||13 901||2 434||31.7||9.6|
|2020||14 694||2 115||28.0||10.3|
Source: Central Statistical Office.
Despite some growth recorded in the past couple of years, sales revenues of digital books are about 2% of the total turnover in Hungary.
From a cultural point of view, the continuous shrinking of the print runs of printed quality magazines is deplorable. They try to survive by running website versions or transferring entirely to the internet.
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