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State to sponsor foreign publishers to translate Czech writers

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Prague, June 6 (CTK) – The state wants to encourage foreign publishers to take more interest in Czech literature by a higher financial support they will receive for the translation of Czech books, the Culture Ministry has said on its web page.

The idea largely aims at the 2019 book fair in Leipzig where the Czech Republic will be the main guest, the Culture Ministry said.

The Culture Ministry has modified its subsidy programme. Until now, it has covered about one-quarter of the total costs of the publication of a book, but newly it can provide up to 70 percent of the sum.

In the past two decades, the state has sponsored 760 translations of Czech books.

So far, the publishers could only ask the ministry for money for a translation. They will be newly able to ask for money for the layout and printing of a book, the costs associated with copyright fees and promotion.

“It is our priority to succeed in Leipzig in 2019. However, Czech literature has a potential to succeed even after translation into other languages,” Deputy Culture Ministry in charge of live arts management Katerina Kalistova has told journalists.

“This is why we have decided to provide foreign publishers with decent conditions,” she added.

The first deadline for the projects applying for sponsoring of publications in 2018 ends on November 1, 2017, the second on April 15, 2018.

The Culture Ministry web page says 760 books translated into Czech were sponsored between 1998 and 2016. In the first year, this covered eight titles and last year, 37 titles.

This year, the Culture Ministry has supported the publication of 95 titles with five million crowns.

The Czech Literary Centre, which is to publicise Czech literature abroad, opened this year. It is administered by the Czech Culture Ministry, making part of the Moravian Land Library in Brno, but seated in Prague.

($1 = 23.401 crowns)

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