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Friday, 12 April 2013 20:39

Forest destroyer APRIL told to shape up

Some companies just don’t get the hint. You just can't go around destroying Indonesia's rainforests and call yourself a sustainable businesses.

Indonesian pulp and paper giant APRIL, or Asia Pacific Resources International, is one of these companies that likes to boast about how sustainable it is. It's a proud member of corporate sustainability groups and never takes off the secret decoder ring it got for joining the World Business Council for Sustainable Development.

The World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) is an elite club of of some of the world’s most progressive companies. We got in touch with them last month and pointed out that APRIL is now Indonesia's leading cause of deforestation for pulp and paper.

We provided them with evidence that 60% of the wood used in APRIL's Riau Andalan Pulp & Paper mill comes from rainforest trees. Last year, APRIL was plotting to trash another 60,000 hectares of rainforest – an area twice the size of Birmingham. That's as unsustainable as you can get!

Today the World Business Council for Sustainable Development delivered APRIL a stark warning: pull your socks up or face the consequences. It has until the end of the year to stop destroying the rainforest or the WBCSD will kick them out.

The WBCSD isn't the only eco-friendly business badge on APRIL's metaphorical lapel. It's also signedy to the United Nations' Global Compact, the world’s largest voluntary corporate sustainability initiative.

Global Compact members aren't supposed to go around trashing rainforests.

When we heard today's news, we wrote to the head of the UN Global Compact. We told them that the WBCSD had put APRIL on notice and suggested they kick the forest destroyer out of their clubhouse if it doesn't commit to zero deforestation.

APRIL needs to get the message that deforestation isn't sustainable. Pressure is mounting, especially as its main competitor, Asia Pulp & Paper, has promised to stop destroying Indonesia's rainforest.

Your move, APRIL... what's it going to be then?

Published in Asian News
Monday, 01 April 2013 20:35

Asian paper industry shows impressive growth

The paper industry has grown rapidly at a rate of 15-17 percent over the past five years, producing more than 2 million tonnes and supplying 64 percent of the domestic market annually.

A report from the Vietnam Pulp and Paper Association (VPPA) showed that the country’s paper consumption reached 2.9 million tones last year. Average consumption per capita in Vietnam rose from 26.44kg in 2010 to 29.61kg in 2011 and 37.2kg in 2012.

VPPA Secretary General Vu Ngoc Bao said last year’s paper exports to 18 countries, mostly to the US, Taiwan and Japan, were estimated at US$425 million, less than half the value of paper products for domestic use.  

tissue asia

Although the domestic production of pulp jumped remarkably from 345,000 tonnes in 2010 to 373,400 tonnes in 2011 and 484,300 tonnes in 2012, it was far from meeting local demands. And Vietnam had to import a similar amount of pulp and paper.

In fact, Vietnam has huge potential for developing  the paper industry as it owns large areas of forest which are yet to be fully exploited.

Most of the shavings from gum trees and acacia hybrids are shipped abroad with volumes jumping 10-fold over recent times, from 400,000 tonnes in 2001 to more than 5.4 million tonnes in 2011, making Vietnam the largest exporter of such shavings.

By a curious paradox, China and Japan purchased wood shavings at a low price of US$110-120 per tonne and used them to produce and resell pulp for around US$900-1,000 per tonne.

To deal with the shortage of materials Vietnam has concentrated on recycling used paper, including old corrugated containers (OCC), old magazines (OMG), old newspapers (ONP) and residential mixed paper (RMP), which are imported from the US, Japan and New Zealand.

Nearly 100 percent of packaging paper, 90 percent of tissue and 60 percent of newspapers in Vietnam are now made from recycled paper.

Last year, the total amount of recycled paper consumed reached 1.45 million tonnes, 987,100 tonnes of which are locally made and 463,000 tonnes imported.

In 2013 the paper industry is forecast to face snags in finding outlets for its products as the economic recession has led to stockpiles of paper.

Statistics from the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) said the volume of paper in stock has increased by 33.7 percent in the first two months of this year compared to the same period two years ago.

VPPA Secretary General Bao said due to a decline in paper consumption, some domestic producers have had to reduce or even stop their operations to minimise their stock holdings.

In addition, there is fierce competition between the sales arms of these producers, Bao added.

The MoIT predicted that the total paper production output will reach 2.18 million tonnes in 2013, 17.7 percent higher than last year.

However, something of a paradox remains as Vietnam still has to import about 1.3 million tonnes of assorted paper worth US$1.35 billion to meet local demands. 

Published in Asian News
Wednesday, 21 April 2010 10:48

SKF First-quarter report 2010

Tom Johnstone, President and CEO:
"SKF delivered a very strong result in the quarter with better volume and higher manufacturing levels resulting in an operating margin of 11.8%. Demand developed positively during the quarter particularly within the automotive business which adversely affected our price/mix. We saw a very positive development of our business in Asia and Latin America and some improvement in North America. However, Europe still remains weak if we exclude our automotive business.

Going forward into the second quarter we expect demand to be significantly higher than the same quarter last year and slightly higher sequentially. As a result of this demand picture we increased our manufacturing as the first quarter progressed which gave a good effect on our cost absorption, particularly in March. We will keep this manufacturing level during the second quarter.”

Published in Financial News
Tagged under

Appleton Coated LLC, NewPage Corporation, and Sappi Fine Paper North America – together with the United Steelworkers commended the U.S. Department of Commerce for its preliminary countervailing duty determinations against subsidized coated paper imports from China and Indonesia.

As a result of these determinations, the Department of Commerce will impose tariffs on imports of coated paper to offset the unfair advantage provided by subsidization. The Department of Commerce found that Chinese coated paper was subsidized by an average rate of 8.38 percent.

Asia Pulp & Paper (APP) producers Gold East, Gold Huasheng, Ningbo Zhonghua and Ningbo Asia Pulp and Paper received a subsidy margin of 12.83 percent, while Sun Paper received a rate of 3.92 percent. In Indonesia , APP/Sinar Mas producers Tjiwi Kimia and Indah Kiat received a subsidy margin of 17.48 percent. All other Indonesian producers/exporters will be subject to this same rate. The result of the Department's actions will be the immediate requirement that these importers of paper from the subject countries will have to post bond or cash deposits in an amount equal to the announced margins pending final resolution of the cases later this year.

The companies and the USW filed unfair trade cases on September 23, 2009 with the U.S. Department of Commerce and the U.S. International Trade Commission ("ITC") alleging that certain coated paper from China and Indonesia had been dumped and subsidized resulting in injury to the domestic industry and its employees. The paper products covered by the petitions include coated paper used in high-quality writing, printing and other graphic applications, using sheet-fed presses with a GE brightness rating of 80 or higher and weighing up to 340 grams per square meter.

source: NewPage

To read the full article go here....>

Published in Asian News