The number of Bologna Children’s Book Fair attendees totalled 27,642 last month, up 3% from 2017, according to the organisers.
The number of visitors from outside of Italy also rose from last year, up 6% to 12,403, while exhibitors were up 8.6% to 1,390.
The organisers said the figures demonstrated that the fair, which took place last week (26th-29th March), was “the most important international trade fair of the industry”.
Other highlights included the Illustrators Survival Corner, which was attended by 6,000 illustrators, the Best Illustrated Children's Books Award, the the Dust or Magic event about apps, and a new event focused on audiobooks.
China was the country of honour and 100 Chinese exhibitors took part, showcasing more than 3,000 titles.
During the fair the organisers also promoted this year’s New York Rights Fair, which will take place in 30th May-1st June and is aimed at introducing American publishers and agents to their international counterparts, and the new collaboration with the China Shanghai International Children's Book Fair, which will be held 9-11th November.
Next year the guest of honour will be Switzerland.