Print Media in Times of Change
CEPI together with 9 other associations has just published a brochure entitled Print Media in Times of Change. Together with publishers, printers, direct marketing and envelope producers, the Print Media Group addresses issues related to smart, sustainable and inclusive growth.
Submitted by: Daniela Haiduc
The Print Media Group PMG is an established network that meets regularly to discuss common issues, share best practice, and learn and benefit from the interdependence of the constituent players. The group aims to provide European decision makers and industry at large with a clear understanding of its values and the role it plays in society as well as in todays political context.
The cluster of industries which form the print media value chain - papermaking, paper converting, printing, publishing and marketing - can and will be a valuable contributor to the new low-carbon, resource-efficient and knowledge-based economy.The European industries relying on paper, among other media, for their services are some of the continents largest employers. The print media value chain is characterised by highly skilled people in quality jobs and has the potential to expand this base. These collective industries do not only have an outstanding civic value to Europe, they also represent high economic value.
The paper and wood sectors contribute almost 2% of GDP in Europe alone and 8 out of 10 of the worlds largest publishing groups are European. The vast majority 95 of European printing companies and publishing houses are small to medium enterprises, employing less than 20 people.The products of the print media value chain significantly contribute to a democratic and knowledge-based society. Print media such as newspapers and magazines also serve as a major facilitator of integration in society for various social groups.
Resource efficiency, climate change, energy, raw materials and innovation are challenges where the inherent characteristics of the paper value chain can play a unique role in bringing improvements and solutions.The sector has a turnover of around €550bn, generating tremendous added value to the EU economy. It is composed of around 180,000 companies employing around 6 million people. For each job in the paper sector, 8 more are provided elsewhere. With the globalisation of paper and print media markets, maintaining the European industries competitiveness has become an increasing challenge. The sector has the necessary ingredients to evolve as a growth sector while continuing to make significant contributions to sustainable development.
Looking at market developments, digital and paper-based options can provide the same or equivalent service, side by side. While some of these parallel services are probably going to shift gradually towards digital alternatives, complementary options will remain. The paper-based version of a service will, in many cases, be transformed into a digital format and then re-materialise as a print-out. Print effectively complements information and communications technology ICT in distributing and communicating information. New technologies enable print products to link with online applications via smartphone or webcam and thus turn print into an interactive medium. Indeed, ICT is extensively used in papermaking and printing, providing continuous efficiency improvements.