Law no. 186/2003 regarding the support and promotion of written culture defines print culture as the domain that comprises books, magazines and other literary / artistic and technical / scientific publications, edited on any kind of support. This law applies to creative works, editorial production, printing, distribution and promotion of print culture. The law refers to the publishing industry and establishes financing systems based on editorial projects at central and local level. On the other hand, the publishing industry – the “print culture” – also benefits from additional financing systems, such as the National Programme for the purchase of books and subscriptions to magazines for libraries, established under the same law (Law 186/2003). Moreover, Law. 136/2015 on the funding of the representative Romanian cultural magazines establishes a special system for funds allocation from the state budget through the Ministry of Culture. An amount with a minimum of 4,500,000 RON (around one million euros), is dedicated exclusively to the funding of the publications issued by the unions of creators in Romania, members of the National Alliance of Creators’ Unions, which brings together only some of the creators’ unions functioning in Romania.
It should be mentioned in this respect that, acting pursuant to Article 1 par. (2) of Law no. 136/2015 on funding representative Romanian cultural magazines, the Ministry of Culture put in place, in 2016, a separate scheme for the funding of cultural publications, other than those referred to in Article 1 par. (1) of the said law (magazines published by the creators’ union from Romania, members of the National Alliance of Creators’ Unions). Under this programme, a total funding of over 1.1 million RON is allocated to a total of 34 cultural publications. The eligibility criteria for the allocation of funds in this case are: magazine reputation and the value of its content; publication year; continuity; publication frequency, circulation and geographic coverage; the prestige of editorialists and contributors; technical and design features, online visibility and diversity of the promotion channels.
Law no. 186/2003 on print culture provides that central and local authorities and public institutions may allocate separate funds from their budgets to finance the publishing of books, magazines and other publications that match the “print culture” definition. Such funding may cover some of the publisher’s costs, as, for example, the editing and copyright costs, or all costs. This provision, like many others included in the various sectoral or sub-sectoral legislations, has no binding effect and, as such, it is rarely or never applied, depending on the degree of interest of the local governments in the domain concerned.
Table. Economic performance – Books and press
|Turnover evolution by CCS sub-sectors (thousand RON)||4,621,136||4,769,791||4,865,673||5,141,686||5,399,796|
|Employment evolution by sub-sectors||27,396||27,655||27,969||27,280||27,696|
|Profit evolution by sub-sectors (thousand RON)||132,925||64,956||163,449||296,291||382,973|
|Labour productivity evolution (thousand RON turnover/number of employees)||169||172||174||188||195|
|Number of companies||4,466||4,849||5,184||5,438||5,557|
Source: Borg Design Database, INCFC analyses
The positive trend recorded by the sector proves a slight rebound after the recession. As a matter of fact, the recession did not affect the structure of this domain, which remains in any case one of the most effective cultural and creative sectors. One possible explanation for the sector’s good performance is linked to the fact that it enjoys a favourable regulatory framework and a substantial public support.