The paper industry has an extended supply chain ranging from lakhs of farmers involved in farm forestry to extensive transportation of raw materials and manufactured products.
April 13, 2020
According to the report, the domestic paper industry has urged the government to include paper in the list of essential services exempted from the lockdown.
In a communication to the Centre, the Indian Paper Manufacturers Association (IPMA) said that paper, in its different forms, is an integral part of the daily lives of people and should be included in the list of essential services.
AS Mehta, IPMA President, said paper mills are continuous process production units and should be exempted from the lockdown. However, in a few States, the definition of continuous process production units is not very clear, he added.
“To remove the ambiguity, we have urged the government to advise all the State governments that integrated paper mills should be designated as continuous process production units and allowed to operate,” he said.
The paper industry needs to not only meet the demand for writing and printing paper for office and educational purposes, but also provide a large quantity of paper and paperboard for packaging, said IPMA. The latter includes essential goods such as FMCG, pharma, food products and milk cartons, it pointed out.
Tissue paper production is also essential as it helps improve hygiene amid a pandemic, it added.
As schools and colleges reopen, there will be a huge requirement for notebooks and books for the new session. There is a need to restore the entire supply chain beforehand so that the end consumers do not suffer, said IPMA.
Though the government has allowed the transport of all goods, at the ground level, the free movement of goods and cargo (by trucks and vans) inter- and intra-State should be facilitated without any hindrance, it added.