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Germany

Given the continuation of subdued economic and consumer conditions as well as the ongoing effects of the conflict in Ukraine, the recoverable volumes of paper and board remained at reduced levels in May and were slightly below those of April. At the same time, the paper industry saw no improvement in new product orders and sales; some production facilities went on short-time working for the first time, following the earlier lead set by others.

Orders for recovered fibre fluctuated within a narrow range: on some occasions, more of a certain grade was ordered, sometimes less of another grade. For example, a small increase was detected for supermarket grades and prices improved slightly as a result, whereas graphic paper and higher grades moved in the opposite direction in terms of volumes and price.

Those companies with long-standing relationships in export countries continued to favour sales abroad. In these countries too, however, demand for recovered paper was at a lower level. At the same time, there were also recycling companies that imported recovered fibre into Germany, depending on demand and the required quality.

Recovered paper suppliers’ warehouses carried almost no stocks of the bulk grades but partial volumes of multi-print, printing waste, etc. On the customer side, numerous paper mills continued to reduce their recovered fibre stocks.

For both recyclers and paper producers, the combination of broadly increasing costs and reduced trading volumes is becoming increasingly problematic.