Hiren Karia: The prices shall remain soft throughout 2019

Hiren Karia of Jay Raj Trading shares his insights on the latest trends in the paper market and predicts the changes in the paper price for 2019

12 Aug 2019 | By PrintWeek India

Hiren Karia of Jayraj Trading

Profitability in the past 12 months 
The last 12 months have been tough with constant rise in paper prices. Although, we, as paper merchants, did get the price advantage in stock holdings, the supply was delayed and this resulted in reduced sales. 

Chinese ban on imports 
As a result of the ban, prices of pulp went up in the international market. This is one of the major reasons for paper prices going up internationally. 

DGAD’s anti-dumping duty 
The imposition of anti-dumping duty on copier paper shall give reasonable protection to the domestic copier industry. The price of USD 855/ metric tonne seems to be a fair price looking at the current pulp prices. The DGAD has done a balancing job by keeping both the local and international mills in check. If the local mills increase the prices beyond reason, then imports become variable, and with the minimum import price of USD 855/metric tonne, the prices are kept in check. I believe this won’t impact printers and converters. 

Sustainable products 
Besides FSC and PEFC-certified products, we have paper made from 100% recycled fibers sourced from agricultural waste like bagasse. In India, 58% of paper is produced from waste paper, 17% from agro waste and 25% from wood.

Paper Day plan for 2019
After FPTA decided to celebrate 1 August 2018 as the first Paper Day in India, with 35 associations spread across India, we made a roadmap and shortlisted activities to be carried out to make people aware of the advantages of using paper. As part of this, we released a Paper Day stamp in different cities, while school students were given tours of paper mills so that they learn that paper is a sustainable product. We created various groups that went on morning walks with banners and posters with Paper Day message on it. We also did radio shows in different cities and ran ads in English and regional newspaper with Paper Day messages. For 2019, we have a roadmap which we will execute.

Paper appreciation drive in India
I wish people of India were more educated about the product they use and not fall prey to false propaganda. 

Paper prices in 2019  
We have already seen price reversal happening post-Diwali. We have seen a price reduction in newsprint, coated paper, copier paper, packaging board, and so on. I feel the prices shall remain soft throughout 2019. 

Value addition in the face of price rise
We are in constant touch with our clients. We understand the job and accordingly suggest the best option. Nowadays, there are lots of options available. We suggest the best option as per quality, price and stock availability. 

Automated warehouses
We do not have automated warehouses. Neither do we have any ‘live’ paper tracking system. But we are looking to automate our warehouse.

Technical team to share paper gyan
Our team is technically sound and they do help our clients in making the right choice. Big printers are usually technically sound and with our constant interaction, we learn from them. This knowledge also helps us in educating small printers make the right choice.

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