New Delhi, Jul 26 : The executive committee of the Indian Newspaper Society (INS) on Friday in its emergency meeting appealed to the government to withdraw the 10 per cent customs duty imposed on newsprint, uncoated paper used for printing of newspapers and lightweight coated papers used for magazines.
The total consumption of standard newsprint in India is 2.5 mn tons and the indigenous mills have a capacity of one mn tons only. Last year, there was a severe shortage of newsprint world-wide but the Indian industry was able to export only 12,726 tons of newsprint which shows that there was no idle capacity available in India and the newsprint capacity showcased by the local manufacturers to the government is fallacious.
Publishers of newspapers and magazines are already reeling under severe financial pressure due to many factors like lower advertisement revenues, higher costs and digital onslaught from technological giants. Small and medium newspapers will go into deeper losses and many may be forced to shut down due to this imposition.Hence, the INS calls for urgent intervention by the government to save Indian newspaper industry by scrapping this unbearable burden imposed on it.(UNI)