After several months of negotiations, prices for newsprint paper in Germany have been inked. Manufacturers will have to cope with slight price decreases in the first half of 2012.
Negotiations on supply conditions of standard newsprint have more or less been wrapped up in Germany. Manufacturers and customers confirm to EUWID to have achieved agreement “in most cases”. Although critics explain that a crash as it occurred in 2010 could be prevented, “paper mills have too often agreed to price reductions out of their own free will”.
According to EUWID respondents, the paper industry will have to react to this with capacity closures. “Publishers are pulling the rug from under their own feet”, comments frequently go.
In the short term, however, customers are benefiting from the imminent price reduction: According to EUWID respondents, prices will go down by around 2-3% compared with the first half of 2011.
As regards delivery periods, players report several variants: while publishers in some cases were able to sign contracts for the whole of the year, six-month contracts are also not unusual but with a clause allowing contract partners to withdraw from the contract or for prices to be renegotiated.
Publishers appear happy with the outcome: the right middle ground has been found; contracts are in line with the current market situation, it is learnt. Representatives of the paper industry, on the other hand, have voiced their unhappiness about the price decline which is increasing the need for capacity cuts: “We are not making any money with these prices and we are even less able to build up reserves for necessary investments.”