Figures released by the Audit Bureau of Circulations (ABC) reveal Australian newspapers have remained in a strong position despite falls overseas.

The statistics indicate a stable result for the June 2009 quarter, with Australians buying more than 20 million newspapers every week.

The ABC said national Saturday newspaper sales had increased by 1.2% compared with the same period in 2008, while metropolitan Saturday newspapers remained stable despite a decline in advertising activity.

The figures indicated Monday to Friday metropolitan papers were relatively steady, with only a 0.1% decrease. The decline of Sunday newspapers has been arrested year on year, with 3.2 million sold per week.

Overall, the ABC statistics demonstrate year-on-year stability with sales down just 0.7%. Juxtaposed with US and UK sales, the figures suggest Australia appears to be in a strong position. The Audit Bureau of Circulations in the US and UK report declines of 7% and 4% respectively.

“The latest ABC circulation figures are further proof that newspapers are delivering what Australians want, namely products of value that continue to set the news agenda,” said Tony Hale, CEO of The Newspaper Works.

“These figures confirm the strength of Australian newspapers. The latest PWC Australian Media and Entertainment Outlook reported that newspapers in Australia are in a much stronger position than their international counterparts and will remain a viable business in the short, medium and longer term.”