The 10th Ho Chi Minh City Book Festival runs from March 19 through 25 this year, with the theme “Books – Culture, Integration and Development.”

It promises to be another huge SE Asia book event that will be largely ignored on the western publishing circuit where it seems we prefer to perpetuate the myth that the “nascent” book markets aren’t worth bothering with.
Just a handful of western publishers – among them Oxford University Press, Cambridge, National Geographic and Macmillan – are represented at the festival at Van Tam Park in Ho Ch Minh City’s District 1, where 900 booths will be displaying 300,000 individual titles.
With over one million visitors expected, a huge number of books are expected to be sold, and several Vietnamese sources, including BNews and Dantri, are suggesting 30 million copies are available for buyers.

Image via BNews Vietnam

That’s an increase of 27% on the 2016 biennial event, and one more example of the booming interest in books in Vietnam and across the SE Asia region.

SE Asia “one of the most promising publishing regions”

Despite this, neither Amazon nor Apple have any ebook presence in Vietnam, although Amazon has just launched in the country.

As Amazon prepares for its Vietnam launch, books and ebooks aren’t on the table

For further examination of the Vietnam and SE Asia opportunity check out past TNPS posts like these:

Vietnam’s Tet book fairs sell $280,000 books in seven days, taking Vietnam book streets sales towards $4 million

S.E. Asia online economy growing faster than predicted. $200bn by 2025. Will publishers rise to the opportunity?