Book loans down in Gozo, increase of readers for Gharb and Sannat
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The National Statistics Office has said that according to administrative data sourced from Malta Libraries, during 2017 in Gozo, there was an overall decrease in book loans.
The NSO noted that this was mainly triggered by the lesser amount of books loaned from the Qala, Nadur and Zebbug public libraries, with loans decreasing by 32.4, 26.2 and 19.1%. respectively.
It added that conversely, increases of 36.0 and 32.8% were recorded in the libraries of Gharb and Sannat.
In Malta, total book loans stood at 910,976, an increase of 66,378 or 7.9% over the preceding year.
The NSO said that the most significant increases in book loans were registered by public libraries in the South Eastern and Northern districts (19.4 and 19.2% respectively).
The public libraries in Zejtun, Qrendi, Marsaxlokk, Gudja and Mqabba registered increases of over 20%. While the libraries in Zurrieq and Birzebbuga reported the highest drops in book loans, equivalent to 7.4 and 2.2%respectively, when compared to 2016 levels.
In the Northern district the highest book loans were registered in Hal Gharghur and Mosta, both of which exceeded 30%. On the other hand, the only drop in book loans in this district was registered in Mgarr, which recorded a decrease of 2.9%
The NSO said that last year, book acquisitions amounted to 45,991, up by 2.1% when compared to the preceding year. Book purchases and donations to public libraries increased by 6.1 and 1.1% respectively. The main source of acquisition continued to be book donations which made up nearly three out of four book acquisitions.