SPP hosts UTIPULP meeting in Gdansk
On March 29 – 30, 2023, in Gdansk, our Association successfully fulfilled the hosting duties of the two-day meeting of UTIPULP (Group of European Market Wood Pulp users), which is based in the Paris office.
On the first day of the event, a regular closed meeting of the Executive Committee (5 members) was held, chaired by Mustapha Zaoug – manag. dir. PPG Pulp Purchasing Group, with the presence of Paul-Antoine Lacour – secr. gen. of UTIPULP. On the same day, a networking meeting was held to accompany the traditional dinner with the participation of delegates coming from the associated countries. Among the guests who came were representatives of the sponsors, in the persons of: Michał Jarczyński (CEO of Arctic Paper Group), Jacek Łoś (Arctic Paper SA, director of purchasing and logistics), Mariusz Rupik (Velvet CARE, director of planning purchasing). The SPP office was represented by Janusz Turski (SPP general director), Dr. Katarzyna Godlewska (SPP office director) and Agnieszka Werner (STF-SPP).
On the second day, a meeting of the UTIPULP General Assembly was held with the participation of representatives of 7 national structures (Austria, Spain, France, Germany, Poland, W. UK, Italy), which share mutual support in the implementation of the most important statutory goals in the European arena. Before the start of the program debate at the GM, J. Turski made a presentation on the priority tasks carried out by SPP. He also explained the complex conditions in which paper industry entrepreneurs in Poland are currently operating.
During a lively discussion preceded by an exchange of information (in a “tour de table” format), much attention was paid to the impact of EU legislation on the condition of the industry in Europe. The importance of specific factors that have strongly determined the economic situation of pulp buyers in recent times was defined: geopolitics as a catalyst for increased business risks, intensified restrictions in supply logistics, high transport or sea freight costs, problems in the supply of process chemicals, rising energy costs.
The summary notes that anticipating the volume of supply of marketable mass to meet the needs of installations in Europe and forecasting its price level has now become fraught with great uncertainty. At the same time, it is not ruled out that accumulating economic tensions (weakening of GDP growth, restrictions on the use of installed capacity, inflation) plus the growing threat of an escalation of the armed conflict in Ukraine will consequently create downward pressure on transaction prices in the European pulp market.