Free paper no more after 2 decades: New look ‘theSun’ to be unveiled tomorrow at RM1/copy

AMID a spiralling printing cost, tabloid-sized theSun – presently Malaysia’s only free mainstream daily – will be re-launched tomorrow (Nov 8) as an affordably-priced paid newspaper at RM1/copy.

The RM1 charge per copy is inevitable for the paper to defray operational costs and for it to continue to reach out to even more readers at a minimal cost, according to acting managing editor Navjeet Singh. For comparison, English peers, the New Straits Times and The Star are priced at RM2 and RM3 respectively.

“The demand for theSun newspaper has far outstripped our supply and has resulted in only the early visitors to our pick-up points getting the newspapers early in the morning, usually snapped up by 9.30am in key areas,” Navjeet told Bernama.

“It is not feasible (anymore) for us to print more copies to meet the current demand due to high production cost whereby newsprint cost has gone up over the last year, hence making it difficult for us to print more than 70,000 copies a day.

“With the idea of reaching more readers throughout the country, the cover price of RM1 will help us to better plan our circulation nationwide.”

To ensure that the physical paper is value-for-money in today’s online newspaper era, Navjeet said theSun will contain eight additional pages, bringing a total of 32 pages per copy.

“The eight pages will consist of additional community news, business news (including Bursa Malaysia), world news, sports and an extra page on environmental, social and governance (ESG) standards, green energy, smart farming or banking and insurance,” revealed Navjeet who was previously theSun’s sports editor before being made the paper’s executive editor in January 2020.

Published by Sun Media Corporation Sdn Bhd which is part of the Berjaya Media Group (formerly Nexnews Bhd), theSun was originally launched on June 1, 1993 as The Sun. It halted publication briefly on June 30, 1994 for a revamp and resumed a month later.

It then became a free newspaper in 2002 with home delivery made available at 30 sen/copy. theSun is available from Mondays to Fridays with the exception of public holidays. – Nov 7, 2023

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