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Blackwell journals available once again in Norway

News Release

- The Ice Thaws: Blackwell journals available once again in Norway -

Oxford, March 27th 2007 - Blackwell Publishing and the four
Norwegian university libraries of Bergen, Oslo, Tromso and
Trondheim are pleased to announce that they have reached
agreement to renew the libraries' subscriptions to Blackwell
journals and the Blackwell journal collections.

Agreement was reached after a meeting in March in Oslo between
representatives of the libraries and Blackwell.  The new
three-year license provides the libraries, scholars and students
with online access and archival rights to more than 770 journals
across the sciences, medicine, social sciences and humanities.
Many journals move their publishing arrangements to Blackwell
each year - more than 30 in 2007 - and the new agreement gives
the libraries flexibility in determining which of these
transferring journals to add to their licenses.

Steven Hall, Journal Sales and Marketing Director of Blackwell
Publishing, said: "I am delighted that we were able to resolve
this matter and restore access to Blackwell journals for
Norwegian researchers.  We had a very open and constructive
meeting in Oslo and were able to explore in detail the concerns
of the libraries and explain the background to Blackwell's

He added that a key issue for academic libraries in Norway is the
25% rate of VAT on online subscriptions; as there is no VAT in
Norway on printed subscriptions this imposes a very substantial
increase in costs on libraries wishing to make the move to
online-only subscriptions.  "We can understand that this level of
taxation on electronic journals is an enormous additional burden
on Norwegian libraries," he said, adding that there is little
that Blackwell and other publishers can do to mitigate its
effects, beyond joining with others in lobbying efforts to bring
VAT on electronic publications down to the same level as VAT on
printed publications.

Professor Helge Salvesen, Library Director, University of Tromso
Library, said: "We are happy to have come to terms on a new
license agreement - specially on behalf of all our users who have
had to manage without the information from Blackwell Synergy."
He added that, "It was very useful to meet and exchange views.
Both parties were quite eager to find a solution and therefore
willing to compromise.  From the libraries' point of view the new
license agreement is acceptable, even though the Norwegian VAT
rate makes it rather expensive for us."

- About Blackwell Publishing -

Blackwell Publishing is the world's leading society publisher,
partnering with 665 medical, academic, and professional
societies.  Blackwell publishes over 800 journals and has over
6,000 books in print.  The company employs over 1,000 staff
members in offices in the US, UK, Australia, China, Singapore,
Denmark, Germany, and Japan and officially merged with John Wiley
& Sons, Inc.'s Scientific, Technical, and Medical business in
February 2007.  Blackwell's mission as an expert publisher is to
create long-term partnerships with our clients that enhance
learning, disseminate research, and improve the quality of
professional practice.  For more information on Blackwell
Publishing, please visit http://www.blackwellpublishing.com or

- About the Norwegian University Libraries -

The four Norwegian university libraries (in Bergen, Oslo,
Trondheim and Tromso) are serving all together approximately
10,000 researchers and staff in addition to a large number of
students.  Online access to electronic resources is a very
important part of the libraries' service to their users.

- Media Contact -

Emily Gillingham
Blackwell Publishing
Tel: +44 (0)1865 476425