• Thursday, Jan 26, 2023
  • Last Update : 10:24 am

Book Fair 2021: Publishers worried about lower sales

  • Published at 05:01 pm March 21st, 2021
Amar Ekushey Book Fair 2021
Book lovers skimming through the pages before buying one while wearing masks to maintain health safety guidelines at the month-long Amar Ekushey Book Fair 2021 on Sunday, March 21, 2021 Mehedi Hasan

Visitors at the fair expressed concerns about the weather

Publishers have expressed concerns over not being able to draw enough buyers to meet their sales goal at the Amar Ekushey Book Fair 2021 due to the unpredictable weather in March and April.

Usually, the month-long fair starts at the end of winter in the beginning of February. However, due to Covid-19, the book fair commenced 46 days later this time, with summer already knocking on the door

Publishers and sales executives said the hot and humid weather with occasional thunderstorms in March-April is unsuitable for book lovers, especially children and the elderly, to visit the fair.

Dipannita Mahi, sales executive of Tamralipi Publications, said the fair is yet to gain momentum. Most people have just been visiting, with a handful of buyers. “We are expecting the pace to pick up from next weekend.

"Bookworms are not coming that much due to the hot weather,” Dipannita said. 

She added that a lack of promotional campaigns may also be behind the low turnout of buyers.

Books published by University Press Limited (UPL) normally attract a lot of readers. However, they were struggling to sell enough books on the fourth day of the fair.

Also Read - Book Fair-2021: Decent turnout amid pandemic, not enough buyers

Kausar Ahmed, a senior sales executive of the stall, said: "Although we are not selling books as per our expectation, we are still hopeful as people are coming amid the Covid-19 infection surge.

“We are worried about weather issues, like the scorching summer heat and upcoming thunderstorms," he added.

Visitors at the fair also expressed concerns over the weather.

Rahmat Ullah, a visitor on Sunday, said: "My family is worried about the weather. I brought them today as it is likely to get hotter later.”

Osman Gani, publisher of Agamee Prakashani, told Dhaka Tribune: "As the book fair is being held in March instead of February, we will not be able to sell as many books as expected. However, we will try our best with what we got.

"The Ekushey book fair is a cultural celebration. It was a correct decision to arrange the fair despite the delay. If we sit idle at home due to Covid-19, we will face various mental issues. This is why the fair was necessary," he said.

A total of 81 new books arrived on Sunday, the same number as the previous day.

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