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The 62nd edition of the Beirut International Arab Book Fair, Maarad al-Kitab, opened its doors Thursday at the Seaside Pavilion, amid piracy, technology and the flagging economy threatening the publishing industry.This year's 12-day fair is hosting 244 publishers from around the region, including Syria, Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. Of those, 167 Lebanese, as well as a section of Chinese and Ukrainian books translated into Arabic.This year's exhibitors turn out is higher than last year's, but participants are still suffering from many issues and generally agree that children's books are what is keeping the industry afloat in this digital age.However, like every electronic file, piracy has become a large problem for e-book distributers and has vastly affected the sales of both e-books and physical copies, with whole websites dedicated to free e-book downloads.
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