MK Pushes Return to Free Market for Books

MK Yoav Kish calls to repeal Literature Protection Law, which prevents sales being offered on books for 18 months after debut.

Shlomo Pitrikovsky ,

Steimatzky store
Steimatzky store
Moshe Shai/Flash 90

MK Yoav Kish (Likud) will submit a proposal to reverse yet another law passed during the 19th Knesset, he stated Sunday - this time, the "Book Law," officially known as the "Law for the Protection of Literature and Writers in Israel." 

The Book Law mandated that the price of new literature can only be reduced, or included in sale packages such as 2-for-1 deals, after 18 months of first publication on the market. 

Kish claims that the law has actually hurt the literature industry; after a thorough examination of the market over the past two years and many meetings with writers and data provided by publishers, there has been a sharp decline in book sales overall. 

"Repealing the Book Law is a necessary step which will lower the prices of books for the general public and will enable publishers flexibility in providing opportunities for writers to debut [...] thanks to a sales increase," Kish stated. 

"The new situation in which a single book price has soared by tens of percent is unacceptable," he added, noting that the Book Law also axed popular book campaigns such as the nationwide 4-for-1 deals traditionally offered during June's annual Book Week.

"With the cancellation of the law, the situation would return to normal," he concluded, vowing to protect the consumer. 

Kish made the announcement ahead of Book Week, which is due to start Wednesday. Bookstores across Israel will offer massive discounts to encourage the Israeli populace to read. 

The MK also noted that other superfluous laws should be examined during the 20th Knesset, and repealed, if necessary, so that the legal system could focus on legislation that is actually necessary and helpful.