Restricted supply and energy cost explosion put enormous upward pressure on publication paper and fine paper prices.
January has seen a massive upsurge in prices for most of the publication and fine paper grades in Europe. Against the background of an unprecendented rise in energy prices and other costs, paper producers have almost doubled prices for their products compared to January last year. Paper manufacturers explain that in some of their mills production costs have risen by several hundred euro per tonne of paper.
Demand for publication paper and woodfree graphic paper has been declining steadily during the past 15 years, and the pandemic has accelerated that downward trend, especially in the newsprint and coated woodfree paper segments. But the European paper industry has reacted with an unprecedented shutdown of output capacity, either by closing down paper machines or converting them for packaging grades. Including this year of 2022, about 3 million tpy of output capacity for woodfree coated and uncoated is being withdrawn from the market within the last three years, and in the publication paper market approximately 4 million tpy of machine capacity for newsprint, LWC and SC paper are being closed down from 2019 to 2022.
As a consequence, supply is tighter than ever, even in shrinking markets. At present paper buyers find it hard to get all of the paper they need, some paper deliveries are on allocation and delivery times are long.
Find the latest market reports and price charts for many publication and fine paper grades in Europe in EUWID Pulp and Paper.
For full access to company news and in-depth market and price reports on major paper and board grades, raw materials and consumables consider subscribing to EUWID Pulp and Paper or start a three-week free trial.