Posted by: Gurindam Jiwa | Sunday, June 22, 2008

Price of Paper Products UP From Today

These are news for all those consuming and/or procuring paper products/byproducts.

Those letterheads, business cards, other office stationery, paper bags, corrugated boxes, labels, stickers, exercise books, text books, any books. And newspaper prices, too.

TheStar Online

Home > News > Nation
Sunday June 22, 2008

Price of Paper Products UP From Today

PETALING JAYA: From today, the price of paper, stationery, printing and packaging products will increase by 10% to 40%, and this could rise to 50% by the end of the year.

The increase was announced jointly yesterday by four associations – the Malaysia Paper Merchants Association, the Selangor and Federal Territory Chinese Printing Presses’ Association, the Malaysia Printers Association and the Selangor and Kuala Lumpur Stationers and Booksellers Association.

“The price increase is inevitable for our industry as there has been a tremendous (price) increase globally for raw materials, especially pulp used in making paper and boards for printing and packaging,” said their spokesman Alexander Lee during a press conference here yesterday.

“The industry has tried to overcome the price surge without increasing product prices but we cannot sustain it anymore, so we are forced to increase the price of these materials and products.

“The public doesn’t have to rush and buy these products, as the increase will be gradual.”

NST Online » Local News
2008/06/22

A4 Paper to Cost 20 Per Cent More by September
By : Ooi Tee Ching

THE price of A4 paper, which is commonly used in photocopiers, is expected to go up by another 20 per cent to about RM12 per ream by September.

Currently, a ream of A4 paper (500 sheets) is selling for around RM10.50.

Malaysia does not produce enough paper to meet its needs.

Last year, the country spent some RM5 billion to import 1.5 million tonnes of paper for use in books, brochures, packaging, carton boxes and newspapers.

Pulp, the raw material in paper-making is not as readily available as it used to be because, in the past few years, pulp producers in the United States and Europe have cut down on production. This has caused the price of pulp in the international market to escalate.

“Costlier pulp has caused paper to become more expensive,” said Malaysia Paper Merchants’ Association (MaPMA) honorary secretary Manmohan Singh Kwatra.

He was speaking at a joint press conference in Petaling Jaya yesterday with Agensi Riaz managing director Ramjan Din, Selangor & Federal Territory Chinese Printing Presses Association secretary-general Alexander Lee and Selangor & Kuala Lumpur Stationers & Booksellers Association honorary secretary Loh Man Tin.

Since 2003, paper import costs have gone up by 50 per cent to US$900 (RM2,930) per tonne from US$600, he said.

“Last year, a ream of A4 paper was selling for an average of RM8.50.

“It has now gone up to RM10.50. By September, we expect the price of pulp to go up again by between 15 and 20 per cent.”

Agensi Riaz Sdn Bhd, one of the biggest distributors of paper to offices and stationery shops in the country estimated that Malaysia used some 120,000 tonnes of A4 paper, in office use and in photocopiers.

“This year, Malaysia’s demand for A4 paper is expected to go up to 138,000 tonnes,” said Ramjan.

One would think that with the advent of email and calls for a paperless office to save trees from being cut down, people would use less paper.

“The reality, however, is completely the opposite. More and more paper is being used.

“We can’t live without paper. It is a necessity from the toilet to the meeting room,” said Manmohan.

“Every time there is a meeting there will paper on the table. If there are 10 people, there will be 10 copies.

“People choose to use paper as a communication tool because it is convenient,” said Lee.

Manmohan said the paper-making and trading industry employed some 110,000 people and the price adjustment was necessary to avoid job cuts and ensure the long-term growth of the industry.

Paper makes up some 60 per cent of the cost in the production of books.

“Exercise books for use in schools will have to be priced 20 per cent higher because pulp, ink and glue prices have gone up,” said Loh.

Loh said stationery items such as ball-point pens and staplers were also not spared from price hikes because raw materials such as plastic and metal had become more expensive.

Crude oil is currently traded at between US$130 and US$140 per barrel in the international market.

“When the price of crude oil goes up, it affects all sectors, said Loh.

“The plastic parts of the ball-point pen are made from crude oil.

“Diesel is needed to fuel heavy machinery to dig up iron ore from the ground.

“When manufacturers process stainless steel into staplers, again they use diesel to power their factories,” he explained.

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