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UK paper exports hit record level

The latest monthly figures for UK exports of recovered paper show that February was the biggest on record.

After posting an all-time high of 4.88 million tonnes last year, the February 2016 total of 529,993 tonnes outstripped the previous high of 505,539 tonnes registered in January 2012 and exceeded the figure for the same month a year earlier by 48.7%.

With shipments in January also high at 442,900 tonnes, this means a combined total for the first two months of this year of 972,893 tonnes, according to latest data from the Confederation of Paper Industries and HM Revenue & Customs.

That is an increase of 24.2% over the 783,102 tonnes recorded in January-February 2015.

A year ago, MRW published a list of the eight occasions on which the UK’s monthly recovered paper exports were more than 400,000 tonnes, up to and including January 2015. Since then, this level has been exceeded six times.

UK collections so far this year are up 9% on last year.

But there was a sharp downturn in the usage of recovered paper at UK mills, with the overall total for January-February this year of 515,628 tonnes, equating to a drop of 16.6% from the 618,303 tonnes of the corresponding period in 2015.

  • This is part of Ian Martin’s Recovered Paper update in the next issue of MRW.

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