News
September 23, 2005
Newsprint prices climbing

Newsprint prices are climbing to record levels.

The cyclical nature of the newsprint business as well as rising energy costs are contributing to high newsprint prices internationally and for the two local importers.

Vice-President and chief financial officer of the Nation Publishing Company in Barbados, Vivian-Anne Gittens explained that prices were at their highest in two years. {{more}}

“There was a period in the 1990s when it was higher, but for us, newsprint is the second biggest cost after labour – and so, nominal change in the price of newsprint is a significant change in our costs.

“We are very sensitive to the costs of newsprint,” she emphasised.

What was even more critical for the country’s biggest publisher was the fact that several major suppliers, such as Abitibi Consolidated of Canada, had not recorded a profit in the last 14 quarters.

“There are only a few newsprint suppliers, so when the price falls, some may drop out of production. Availability goes down and then the price goes up.

“Other factors influencing the price are the cost of energy as well as new environmental laws to which producers have to conform,” Gittens said.

Furthermore, the top executive revealed there had been an explosion

in demand for newsprint in Asia and that, too,

was helping to push up prices.

(Business Authority)