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Free access to electronic version of the science journal Nature is being made available to the world's poorest countries.

The access will be provided through the Health InterNetwork Access to Research Initiative (HINARI), a scheme launched by the World Health Organisation in January to increase access to scientific literature in developing countries, whose research institutions are often unable to afford the subscription fees charged by journal publishers (see WHO initiative gives free access to journals).

At present, researchers in countries with a Gross National Product (GNP) below US$1,000 per head can gain free access to almost 1,000 journals through HINARI. From next year, it is intended that the journals will also be available at greatly reduced prices to countries with a GNP between US$1,000 and US$3,000 per head.

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