Strike in the pulp and paper industry in Finland left its mark on the woodfree paper markets in Germany. Manufacturers announce price hikes for Q2.
The year got off to a good start on the fine paper market in Germany, according to suppliers. After January began with brisk demand, the positive demand trend for woodfree uncoated paper continued in February. One factor providing a tailwind for woodfree uncoated paper demand was the strike in Finland, but the seasonal inventory build-up this year was also stronger than usual.
On the market for woodfree coated paper, the strike in Finland seems to have had a particularly noticeable effect in the reels segment, with mechanical coated reels also being affected. Some buyers reported delayed shipments and more complicated procurement in February. As a result, mills outside of Finland said they had lively demand and well-filled order books in the first half of February.
In February, prices for coated and uncoated woodfree paper grades remained largely unchanged. Manufacturers are now preparing the grounds for a price hike in Q2 deliveries.
It remains unclear to what extent the coronavirus epidemic will impact the fine paper market in Germany. A few EUWID respondents believe the coronavirus spread may have an effect on pulp prices, since a number of paper mills are idled in China and less pulp is needed. Other sources reported problems with imports of paper goods and delays in deliveries of auxiliary and process materials from China.
This article is an excerpt from EUWID's market and price report on the key paper and board markets in Germany.
EUWID Pulp and Paper subscribers will find the EUWID Price Watch Germany for February in issue no 10/2020, which was published on 4 March.