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100 Italian Newspapers Facing Closure

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Up to 100 newspaper titles in Italy are facing closure because of the government’s subsidy cuts – down from €170m a year to €53m (£142/£44m).

The include Liberazione, a communist daily; L’Unita, the paper founded by Antonio Gramsci; Il Manifesto, an independent left-wing paper; and Avvenire, a popular Catholic daily. But the bulk of the closures will involve local papers across the country.

According to the Financial Times’s report, The subsidies are now viewed as a wasteful abuse of taxpayers’ money to prop up a declining industry with limited readership (Liberazione publishes about 5,000 copies).

The cuts, ordered by the previous government of Silvio Berlusconi, have been confirmed by Mario Monti’s administration.

Mainstream newspapers – such as Corriere della Sera and La Repubblica – will continue to benefit from indirect subsidies, such as VAT waivers on copies sold by subscription and reduced postal delivery costs.

Source: Financial Times

This article originally appeared in MediaGuardian.