Dealing with increased cost of raw materials, the domestic paper industry urged the government to impose 10-15 percent safeguard duty to curb cheaper imports from ASEAN countries.
January 12, 2017
At present, imports of paper and paperboard attract 10 per cent customs duty. It has been brought to a zero level to ASEAN countries under the free trade agreement and recently duty-free shipments have been permitted from Korea. The pulp and paper industry demanded that the government should impose 10 percent additional customs duty on overseas purchase of paper and paperboard which will further restrict cheaper shipments from non-ASEAN countries as well. So, as a part of pre-budget proposal, IPMA has submitted similar recommendations.
The domestic paper industry is struggling to sustain because of high cost of raw material, especially of wood, so it is necessary to restrict imports. The cost of wood, a main raw material in paper manufacturing, is about USD 100 a tonne in India, while it is only USD 30-40 a tonne in other countries. So, wood price comprises 50 percent of the total cost of production of paper in India. IPMA has asked the government to provide 10 percent of degraded forest land for raising pulpwood plantation which would make available about 2.5 million hectares of productive plantation.