PETALING JAYA: English and Chinese dailies continue to pull through amid the challenging print media landscape, boosted by their digital editions.
The latest figures released by the Audit Bureau of Circulation (ABC) for the first half of 2016 shows that The Star remains the nation’s highest circulated daily with a total average daily paid circulation of 359,442, a 2% rise from the second half of last year.
Between January and June this year, the average net print circulation per publishing day for The Star stood at 248,559 from 248,413 in the second half of 2015.
Sunday Star circulation saw a marginal 1% decline this period, with 244,053 copies circulated compared to 246,652 in the second half of 2015.
Meanwhile, circulation of The Star ePaper rose by 5% to hit 110,883 from 105,645 from the second half of 2015.
Sunday Star ePaper circulation also grew by the same rate to reach 109,950 from 104,804 previously.
The Edge Financial Daily had an increase of 12,943 in physical and digital circulated copies from the second half of 2015, giving it a significant growth in total average daily paid circulation of 23%.
The New Straits Times saw a sharp decline in total average daily paid circulation. Shrinking by 25%, the English daily owned by Media Prima Bhd had 50,104 physical and digital copies in circulation from 66, 828 in the second half of 2015.
Among Chinese dailies, Sin Chew Daily showed a healthy increase of 6% in total average daily paid circulation with 433,849 physical and digital copies in circulation.
China Press and Guang Ming daily experienced a fall of 5% and 6% in total average daily paid circulation respectively.
The report also showed a decline in total average daily paid circulation among Malay newspapers.
Harian Metro’s total average daily paid circulation dropped by 16%, followed by Berita Harian, Utusan Malaysia and Kosmo, which dropped by 14%, 5% and 3% respectively.
Their weekly editions total average daily paid circulation have also dropped with Metro Ahad’s going down by 21%, followed by BH Ahad, Mingguan Malaysia and Kosmo Ahad decreasing at rates between 4% and 7%.
This period’s circulation numbers are derived from 1.4 million copies of Malay newspapers, 1.1 million copies of English newspapers and 800,000 copies of Chinese newspapers from 24 daily titles and nine weekly titles distributed by ABC members nationwide.
In a statement, ABC vice-chairman and audit committee chairman, Foong Ai Peng called Net Average Circulation per Publishing day encouraging as papers remain a vital communication tool despite reduced consumer purchasing power following recent price hikes of goods and services.
Print advertisements still commanded the bulk of the total media spend with 51% or RM3.04bil of ad spend, said ABC chairman Yap Chee Weng.