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Global Press Outlook Remains Buoyant

Revenues from global newspaper circulation exceeded advertising revenues last year for the first time this century according to the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA) in its latest annual World Press Trends survey.

Of the estimated US $179 billion in circulation and advertising revenue generated last year, $92 billion derived from print and digital circulation compared with $87 billion for advertising.

However there was considerable differences between the different regions. In Europe, for example, print circulation decreased by 4.5% year-on-year, and by 21.3% over the past five years. Print ad revenues, meanwhile, declined by 5% year-on-year, and by 23.1% over five years.

In North America print circulation was down by 1.3% year-on-year, and by 8.8% over five years while print ad revenues were down by 7.5% year-over-year, and 28.2% over the same period.

Meanwhile in the Asia-Pacific region print circulation was up by 9.8% year-on-year in Asia, and by 32.7% over five years, largely on the back of large increases in India. Print circulation declined by 5.3% year-on-year in Australia and Oceania, and by 22.3% over 5 years.

Print ad revenues, however, were down 6.5% year-on-year in Asia-Pacific region and by 7.3% over five years. In Latin America, print circulation was up 0.6% year-on-year and by 3% over the past five years. Likewise print revenues were up by 4.9% year-on-year and 27.7% over a five year period.

Finally, the Middle East and Africa region reported print circulation increases of 1.2% year-on-year and 3.7% over five years while print ad revenues grew by 2.2% year-over-year, but declined by 22.1% over five years.

The report also found that globally, some 93% of newspaper revenues are derived from print. While newspapers’ digital ad revenues aren’t expected to overtake print ad revenues for quite some time, they grew by 8.5% in 2015 and by nearly 60% over 5 years.

Paid digital circulation also increased by 56% year-on-year and by more than 1,420% over the past five years. Roughly 2.7 billion people globally read print newspapers, and more than 770 million read them on desktop digital platforms, the report noted.

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