Dec 18, 2009

Asia’s Most Newspaper Loving Nations

By thomascrampton  October 20, 2009  Post a comment

This chart is taken from the fascinating WAN IFRA research report on the state of newspapers in China, India and Southeast Asia.
Not surprising to see Hong Kong off the charts, with a combined paid-for and free daily circulation of 590 copies per thousand adults.
What is interesting about Hong Kong is that a huge portion of newspapers (probably 95 percent or more) in the territory are sold off of the newsstands (not via subscription). This creates a fierce tabloid culture where publishers must literally grab readers each day.
Some other highlights:

Newspaper circulation in Asia grew +3.44 percent in 2008 over the previous year, despite the global downturn, and has grown +17.52 percent over the past five years.
The Asian edition, which includes reports on 25 countries and a wealth of summaries that provide a detailed picture of the newspaper market in the region, shows:
-  India and China are the world leaders in the newspaper industry, in terms of size. The two countries account for 45 of the world’s 100 largest newspapers. India has more daily newspapers than any other country and leads in paid-for daily circulation, surpassing China for the first time in 2008.
-  The number of Asian Internet users rose 23.51 percent last year from a year earlier, to more than 704 million. Over five years, Internet usage jumped 116 percent. There are more broadband subscribers in Asia than any other region - nearly 158 million. The number of broadband subscribers grew 23.33 percent last year and 145 percent over the past five years.
That compares with 123 million broadband subscribers in Europe (up 7.4 percent last year), 97.5 million broadband subscribers in North America (+11 percent), 19 million in South American (+36 percent), 6 million in Australia and Oceania (+6.6 percent) and 2.5 million in Africa (+28 percent).
-  Asia also leads the world in the number of mobile cellular subscriptions - nearly 2 billion. The number of subscribers rose by one-quarter in 2008 and by 163 percent from 2004.
That compares with 894 million in Europe (+7 percent in 2008), 425 million in North America (+7 percent), 365 million in Africa (+33 percent), 328 million in South America (+21 percent), and 28 million in Australia and Oceania (+5 percent).
-  Paid-for newspaper circulation rose in eight countries in which figures were available last year: Afghanistan (+11.11 percent), Bangladesh (+7.14 percent), Burma (+13.51 percent), Cambodia (+9.09 percent), India (+8.26 percent), Indonesia (+6.86 percent), Nepal (+2.94 percent), and Thailand (+0.68 percent).
Circulation fell in eight countries and territories: Brunei (-8.89 percent), Hong Kong (-2.44 percent), Korea (-1.04 percent), Malaysia (-4.92 percent), Singapore (-1.48 percent), Sri Lanka (-2 percent), Taiwan (-5 percent), and Vietnam (-0.71 percent). Circulation remained stable in North Korea, Laos, Macau, Maldives, Philippines and East Timor. No figures were available for 2008 in Bhutan, China and Pakistan. Japan was excluded from the regional summaries, which focus on the developing markets in the region.
-  Over five years, paid-for circulation rose in 15 countries and territories: Afghanistan (+50 percent), Bangladesh (+36.36 percent), Brunei (+64 percent), Cambodia (+20 percent), Indian (+45.5 percent), Indonesia (+12 percent), Laos (+8.7 percent), Macau (+5.6 percent), Malaysia (+71.74 percent), Maldives (+75 percent), Nepal (+27.27 percent), Singapore (+18.69 percent), Thailand (+7.3 percent), East Timor (+50 percent), and Vietnam (+1.45 percent).
Circulation over five years fell in six countries and territories: Burma (-10.64 percent), Hong Kong (-10.31 percent), Korea (-3.28 percent), Philippines (-0.79 percent), Sri Lanka (-2 percent), and Taiwan (-15.56 percent). Circulation was stable in North Korea. No figures were available for Bhutan, China, and Pakistan.