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DEVASTATING EFFECT OF UNCOMPETITIVE PRICING ON UK PAPER INDUSTRY

As we continue to reel from this week's news of the closure of the SSI steel plant in Teeside, further disturbing information concern the UK's paper industry has emerged following Confederation of Paper Industries (CPI) research this Summer.

The CPI has reported that 4 paper mills and 13 paper-making machines may close this year as a result of high taxes and uncompetitive fuel prices. These plants are believed to produce one million tonnes of paper a year, some 20% of our total and their closure could lead to the UK the becoming the world’s largest paper importer.

Aylesford Newsprint in Kent and Tullis Russell in Fife have already closed down this year with significant job losses; DS Smith is in consultation on the closure of it's plant in Somerset and Failand Paper Services in Bristol have called in administrators.

But what is causing this unsettled future for the UK paper industry?  According to the CPI one key factor is the steeply rising costs of renewable energy caused by two UK taxes - the carbon price floor (CPF), which almost doubled this year from £9.55 per tonne of carbon emitted to £18.08, and the carbon reduction commitment (CRC) which rose to £16.50 per tonne.  These taxes are only payable by UK businesses automatically giving producers across Europe and the rest of the world a competitive advantage.  

ACM Environmental is calling for the UK Government to take action to reverse this trend and protect yet another key UK industry.

 

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