• Pulp prices in China up 4-6% w/w: NOREXECO pulp futures for CY 23E imply a 9-14% decline in Europe, and China. Availability of NBSK in contract and spot markets in the US has slumped due to unplanned downtime, while shipment delays worsened in recent weeks. In addition, higher freight and fuel costs are adding to the pressure. Domtar (1.9mtpa capacity) announced an USD 80-125/t price increase for BSK market pulp in key global markets, effective April 1. Eldorado and Klabin follow Suzano and are set to increase BEK pulp prices by USD 100/t in Asia and USD 50/t in Europe and North America from 1 April. SCA to increase price for NBSK in Europe to USD 1,400/t (+USD 40-50/t) effective immediately. UTIPULP released January data: European pulp consumption was down 5.2% y/y; Inventories -1.3% y/y; and Inventory days -5.0% y/y. EUROPULP released February data for stocks of wood pulp at European ports: -8% y/y & +5% m/m. PPPC reported World-20 market pulp stats for February 2022: Global pulp producer stocks -2 days m/m to 42 days-of-supply (BSK: -1 day to 45 and BHK: -1 day to 41). Shipments +1.2% y/y & +2.4% m/m to 4.152mt (SW: +3.8% m/m & +4.2% y/y to 1.811mt; HW: +1.0% m/m & -0.3% y/y to 2.161mt). The shipment-to-capacity ratio reached 90% in February (January 21: 79%), in line with Feb 21 (91%).
  • UWF prices lead Graphic Paper gains: After factoring in a 30% discount to list pulp prices, the CWF/HW spread is stable at EUR 185/t (UWF margin up 9% w/w: EUR 339). Yesterday, Stora Enso announced its intention to further reduce its graphic paper footprint by divesting from four paper sites, with a total capacity of 1.7mpta (32% SC Magazine Papers; 28% UWF; 14% newsprint and 26% Book paper, newsprint and MFC). These sites are in Finland (Anjala); Sweden (Hylte and Nymoola), and Germany (Maxau).  EUROGRAPH released January data for total European shipments: CWF +10% y/y & -2% m/m; CM -13% y/y & -19% m/m; UWF -11% y/y & -6% m/m. AF&PA released CFS stats for February: Purchases +8% y/y; inventories +1% m/m; imports +43% y/y & exports -23% y/y. US March graphic paper prices higher (CFS: +USD 20/t) on tight supply. Domtar, Kruger, and Lecta set new hikes for April and May. ND Paper’s Biron, Wisconsin mill, will be converting its B26 PM at the end of 2022 from coated mechanical papers (236ktpa) to lightweight, high-strength recycled packaging products.
  • Price hikes on US boxboard gain support on SBS: More support for price increases on US boxboard solid bleached sulphate (SBS) effective in April emerged the past week with new support from Clearwater Paper, Sappi North America, and Metsä Board. Sappi North America has set a 10% increase on its Spectro SBS grades effective April 25.
  • Russian insights: SFT, one of Russia’s largest testliner producers is still operating at regular capacity. However, the timeline for new investment and modernization plans are likely to change as European suppliers are reluctant to supply equipment to Russia.  Arkhbum Tissue Group, part of Russia’s Arkhangelsk Pulp and Paper Mill (APPM) and Pulp Mill Holding, continues to operate as usual. However, Arkhbum Tissue is experiencing difficulties with the sourcing of necessary chemicals. It is considering programs for the rapid development of domestic chemical production for the forestry industry.
  • Mondi news flow: Mondi unveils state-of-the-art flexo printing line at its plant in Gronau, Germany. The new machinery will service the hygiene industry’s growing demand for advanced printing options for films and laminates and deliver greater flexibility in feminine care pouch wrapping designs and film choices.

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