Beijing reveals hybrid book fair plan

The Beijing International Book Fair (BIBF) has announced this year’s event will be a hybrid of digital and physical, with Chinese assistants available to represent international publishers’ titles.

Running from August 25th to 29th, the physical event is expected to be limited to Chinese and China-based publishing houses owing to travel restrictions, with forums, seminars, face-to-face meetings, and other events.

The five-day book fair will bring together Chinese publishers, related exhibitors and international publishers based in China under one roof. Ceremonies, forums, seminars, face-to-face meetings, and other events will be staged during the fair. 

The Chinese book market has reportedly shown strong growth in 2021, with the first quarter up 18.6% year on year. Online book sales have increased by 10.69%, while physical store channels have increased by 55.44%, according to OpenBook.

For international publishers, who are not able to travel due to Covid-19, BIBF has launched: SMART!Assistant. BIBF will provide assistants on-site during the book fair to present international publishers’ titles to interested Chinese publishers. Alternatively, publishers can send books to a collective space at the fair to showcase their latest book titles: deadline to register, 30 June 2021.

The festival has also extended its online services at SMART!BIBF. In 2020 it attracted more than 1,400 publishers, and helped publishers conduct their rights business online, with more than 38,000 copyright titles on display. 

“Following a very strong year of growth for Chinese publishing, we are delighted to announce that Beijing International Book Fair (BIBF) will be back to support the publishing industry in both physical and digital forms this year,” said Fair Director Ms Liying Lin.

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