The new global pulp market study “World Fibre Outlook up to 2030” by Pöyry Management Consulting details how global consumption of papermaking fibre and specialty pulps has grown from 185 million tonnes in 1980 to 416 million tonnes in 2014 – representing a growth of 125%.
The past 35 years have witnessed major changes in the paper industry’s fibre furnish. The recovered paper industry has seen a 28% increase in its share of the market, with global consumption levelling at 233 million tonnes in 2014. During the same period, the share of wood pulp has declined by 27% with global consumption amounting to 167 million tonnes in 2014.
According to the Pöyry study which looks at ten geographic regions and ten product areas including papermaking and specialty fibre grades, global demand for paper and paperboard is forecast to grow by 1.0%/a in the long term, from about 400 million tonnes in 2014 to 467 million tonnes by 2030. This growth is driven by the emerging markets with Asia accounting for 95% of global incremental paper and paperboard consumption during 2014-2030.
The global papermaking fibre market is facing profound changes with China’s economy starting to slow down and uncertainty growing in other parts of the world. The study by Pöyry provides insights into this increasingly turbulent market and notes that with paper market slow-down, coupled with the combination of several new pulp lines coming on stream at close intervals to each other, the global pulp industry is facing a real risk of value destruction.
Pöyry forecast that maintaining equilibrium despite the evolving new large-scale supply will be one of the key challenges for the pulp industry towards the 2020s. The report highlights that there is a strong need for restructuring within the global pulp industry and supply/demand balances will inevitably then be restored over time.
The study proposes that investments made ahead of demand in low cost areas will inevitably lead to exits of higher cost suppliers. Meanwhile, over-capacity in the lower sections of the supply curve will result in declining equilibrium prices and lowered producer surplus, thus affecting all players in the market.
The “World Fibre Outlook up to 2030” study provides a strategic platform and essential business information for all business participants, including pulp and paper companies, chemicals, machinery and related suppliers, investors, financiers, institutions, pulp traders, logistics companies and other interest groups.
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