During the third quarter of 2022, we started to see a decrease in demand for most qualities. There was a dramatic price decline for OCC and, at the end of the quarter, many other grades following suit, including mixed paper, newsprint and graphic papers.
Among the several reasons for this, the main one was concern over how the supply of gas would affect production and also over decreased consumption owing to inflation and higher energy prices. Several mills cut their production, mentioning high energy costs as the main reason. In parallel with this, order books thinned considerably during the summer and, for the first time in a long while, warehouses were filling with finished rolls.
Meanwhile, healthy demand is coming from insulation manufacturers given that energy prices are high and that householders therefore want to improve the insulation of their homes.
During the summer months, there was also a lack of SOP on the market and demand from tissue mills was high.
Transport prices are still at elevated levels but a slightly better situation has emerged regarding capacity.