Cost pressure and scant supply send graphic paper prices soaring in the UK


Prices for all paper and  board grades went up in the UK in April amid scant supply and cost pressure. Supply chains were under pressure as a result of the P&O Ferries crisis.

In the UK manufacturers have instituted the price increases and energy surcharges announced for publication paper and woodfree printing and writing paper without any concessions in April, boosting prices to new heights. Paper producers were under huge cost pressure, and supply was limited compared with demand. However, this might well change now that the strike at UPM’s Finnish mills has come to an end.

Corrugated case material and cartonboard also became more expensive in April. That being said, demand for corrugated board remains on the low side in the UK, with ample supply prevailing. The situation for GC board grades has eased a little, while GD board has tended to become a little scarcer because Reno de Medici’s Blendecques mill is still offline.

Recovered paper prices have continued on their upward trajectory in the UK amidst low collection volumes and decent demand. British buyers were chiefly driving prices for ordinary grades higher in April. However, old corrugated containers (OCC) prices subsided during the course of the month.

Logistics was turning out to be a challenge in April: the turmoil at P&O Ferries slashed freight capacity between the UK and mainland Europe and to Ireland and Northern Ireland, resulting in lengthy delays and restricting freight capacity. Recovered paper deliveries to Continental Europe and paper and cartonboard shipments to the UK were hit hard.



This article is an excerpt from our latest market and price report on paper and board markets in the UK. Subscribers to EUWID Pulp and Paper have access to the full report and the EUWID Price Watch UK for April 2022 from Wednesday this week.

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