With just a few exceptions, all price negotiations on the French newsprint and magazine paper market had been put to bed in France in the second week of January.
The knock-on effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on the European publication paper markets are clearly illustrated by prices negotiated in the latest round of talks in France. These discussions have culminated in historically low prices being charged for newsprint and magazine paper grades since 1 January 2021.
The newsprint market was in an extraordinary state of affairs, sources in France agreed unanimously. Last year’s plunge in demand clearly created significant surplus capacity that can hardly be offset by taking temporary downtime.
Magazine paper orders were also contested in France over the past few weeks and months, particularly in the SC paper sector. LWC prices had already experienced significant price cuts last year and were thus under a little less pressure during the latest round of price talks.
Insiders anticipate that capacity closures that have already been carried out and those still in the pipeline will have an impact over the coming months and influence price talks for the second half of 2021.