Michelle Yeoh launches Mari Membaca 1Malaysia

Halcyon days

The government has allocated RM2mil thisyear to buy books by local writers and help distribute them to librariesnationwide. Information Communication and Culture Minister Dr Rais Yatimsaid this will cut off middlemen used in distribution and help the writers enjoy better income.

“Most of our writers can’t survive as middlemen ask for high commission to distribute their books.

“That is why the government has revised its plan aimed at encouragingwriting and the reading habit among Malaysians,” he said after opening the ‘MariMembaca 1Malaysia’ programme with Michelle Yeoh at the National Library here yesterday.

Rais said the move would also help increase the number of books in libraries and boost the industry. Statistics show that Malaysians aged 10-12 years read an average 12 booksannually while the 13-41 year group read eight books annually. Malaysians above 41 years read an average six books annually.

Book sales amounted RM2.1billion in 2009,” he added.

Meanwhile, this report neglects entirely to get a quote from Michelle Yeoh, the crowd-puller for the event.

— Bernama