School textbook prices fixed:'Move will check unscrupulous practices'

2014-04-05

Himalayan News Service

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The Textbook Price Fixation Committee (TPFC) today endorsed the government decision on price of school textbooks.

Last year, publishers and distributors had put stickers on the books and pasted the price arbitrarily. The government banned the use of stickers on textbooks and made it mandatory to print the price on the cover so that the guardians and students were not cheated. Textbooks must also be priced the same all over the country.

In March, TPFCprepared a report with price ceiling of textbooks and sent it to the Ministry of Education for final approval. Publishers had urged the ministry to increase the price from 20 to 25 per cent, but the committee increased the price by only five per cent. The ministry then sent the increased price ceiling to the committee, which approved it and decided to implement it with effect from today.

If the text has a single colour, each page of the book will cost 89.25 Paisa. Each page with texts in two colours will cost Rs 99.75 paisa and each page with text in multi-colour will cost Rs 1.15 paisa. The cover page, acknowledgment, table of contents and pages without page number will be free.

Suprabhat Bhandari, president, Guardians Association of Nepal said this would help check black-marketing of textbooks.

He said publishers would have to publish the price of school textbooks in one of the daily newspapers before the academic session.

The report said if the book had 64 pages, its cover would have to weigh 100 grams and if it had more than 64 pages, the cover would have to weigh 250 grams. The size of textbooks would be the same (18x25 cm) as recommended by the committee.

“The price ceiling is only for the new fiscal year 2070/71, it will be revised next year” Bhandari said, adding, “The books will be published by mid-November every year.”