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INDUSTRY REPORT: Printing paper market in Russia: present situation, tendencies and prospects



Group of Authors:
V.Y. Senatorov, O.A. Shirokova and Е.М. Kirichenko

Under General Editorship of:
V.V. Grygoryeva, Deputy Head of the Federal Agency for Press and Mass Communications


In 2012-2013 the economic growth in Russia will be set in the first instance by both investment and consumer demand. The effect of recovery growth will not happen again as all sectors of industry have already reached or are about to reach their pre-crisis highs. Any further development is only possible through intensive rather than extensive growth.

Neither the participants in the process of paper and material supply to the publishing and printing market nor the manufacturers and distributors of press product have been referred to a single economic group based on involvement in the end product release therefore statistical information allowing to obtain complex data on the country’s paper and publishing market, is missing. In general the «Pulp and Paper Industry; Publishing and Printing Activities» sector has shown high rates of growth over the last few years: in 2011 the volume of shipped goods and completed works/services doubled in comparison with 2005 but according to the data from the Federal Service of Government Statistics this growth was mainly achieved through the efforts of the pulp and paper industry.

As reported by the Interregional Print Association there are about 7.5 thousand graphic art enterprises in Russia employing approximately 200 thousand people. At that the number of small- and medium-size enterprises among them exceeds 90% of the total. The total annual market of printing works (services) is estimated by experts at US$7.5-8 bln. The maximum slump in print production and its value in 2009-210 took place in the publishing sector. According to the market players the printing revenues fell by 30% on average in the period from 2009 to 2011.

For 20 years of development of the printing services and materials market in Russia the wholesale paper companies there have built an effective infrastructure for distribution and supply of papers, cardboards and consumables to the national printing enterprises. The core product assortment of the paper wholesalers is composed of coated papers: half of the volume of coated papers of all types and over 80% of the volume of chemical coated papers consumed in Russia are distributed through the wholesale dealership networks and warehouse complexes. This said, it should be noted that the leading positions on the market are occupied by Russian companies.

An analysis of the tendencies in the global and Russian printing paper markets carried out by the Paper Distributors Association brings us to the following key conclusions:

For the period of 2002 through 2011 the volume of chemical coated papers consumption in Russia grew 4-fold and that of text and magazine papers – 5-fold. The volume of imported coated papers from Asian manufacturers has grown 24.5-fold since 2002. Russia is the second largest importer of coated papers in Eastern Europe after Poland. The total global production of coated papers is estimated at 44 mln. tons. At the same time the production volumes in Asia are growing while in Europe they are diminishing (unprofitable facilities are being closed by European manufacturers amid the sales slowdown and stagnation).

Import of finished press products sufficiently narrowing down both the potential size of the Russia’s printing services market and the volume of coated paper consumption, still poses a serious threat to the former. After the 2010 reduction in import customs duties on coated papers from 15% to 5% the books and periodicals import fell sharply and it continues to decrease: e.g. in 2011 the import of books in physical terms was 45% lower than in 2010. Evidently these measures aimed at reduction of duties urged a massive transfer of publication printing activities to facilities in Russia. However the 5% duty on the coated paper of 72 g/m2 weight for books and magazines – the most important type of paper for publishers – still remains provisional, therefore the 2011 aggregate import of finished press products in spite of its significant reduction stood at impressive 125 thou. tons.

The volume of newsprint consumption in Russia in 2011 was 27% lower than in the peak year 2006, 9% higher than in 2010, 5% higher than in the crisis year 2009, but 12% lower than in the pre-crisis year 2008. The 2011 global newsprint consumption sank in the scale below the 30 mln. tons level – it was 5% lower than in 2010 and 22% lower than in 2000. According to expert forecast the global newsprint consumption will be falling annually by 3% on average. At the same time Russia is not cutting down its production volumes and remains the second largest newsprint exporter in Europe after Sweden. In 2011 Russia exported 68% of the total newsprint volume produced in the country.

The peak of the offset paper consumption was recorded in Russia in 2002 while in 2011 it was 20% lower.

The consolidation of capital has been the principal tendency in the Russian pulp and paper industry in recent years. By now there have been 10-11 large and stable enterprises formed in the industry. They produce over 90% of competitive products in-demand nationally and outside of the country: newsprint, offset paper, copy paper, box board and pulp. In Russia a production of coated papers practically does not exist and over 99% of the demand has been met through import. The issues of organization of domestic coated paper enterprises in Russia are closely associated with the high costs of modern equipment and technologies along with the need for long-term investments, over-supply of production facilities in the coated papers exporting countries and with the existing capacity of the Russia’s coated paper market still too small for a large-scale manufacturing.

According to the majority of the interviewed pulp and paper experts, the assertion of Russia to WTO will not impact significantly the existing Russian paper enterprises, in spite of a considerable reduction in import duties on papers and cardboards, as the most competitive manufacturers in the country have already completed their restructuring and cost-saving programs and are geared to the external market among other things. However according to the conditions of the Russia’s assertion to WTO the import duties on the not produced in the country but badly needed by publishers coated mechanical papers of 72 g/m2 weight will be reduced to 10% only.

The prices of various imported coated papers are formed in the external market subject to the cost of raw materials, energy and other components of the base cost and depending on the market situation and global prices for the involved type of product. These factors together with the logistics costs, customs fees and exchange rates form the final cost of coated paper in Russia. Nevertheless the amount of payments to customs plays the most important role in the formation of both the final cost of the imported paper in the territory of Russia and the competitive base cost of printing production as the share of paper in the operating cost of printing production is 40% to 80% depending on the type and characteristics of the paper.

According to the data provided by the Federal Service of Government Statistics for 12 months of 2011 the prices of Russian manufacturers in the pulp and paper industry, as well as in the publishing and printing sector increased by 10.3% in comparison with the relevant period of 2010. At the same time the costs for pulp, ground-wood, paper, cardboard, and products thereof increased by 17% while the production and services costs in the printing and publishing sector increased by 2,3% only.

The data reviewed in this report show in general that potentially the paper and cardboard market in Russia has not been fully saturated yet. The fact that the upward demand tendency for printing papers was interrupted by the crisis evidences that in a favorable economic environment in the country in general and in the publishing and printing industry in particular the consumption of printing papers will grow further.



  1. General economic situation in RF. Sectoral figures in pulp and paper manufacturing, publishing and printing
  2. Russian printing market
  3. Import of finished printing products
  4. Supply of printing papers for publishing and printing complex
    1. Principal types of printing papers
    2. Structure of printing paper consumption in RF
      1. Newsprint
      2. Offset paper
        1. Russian manufacturers of newsprint and offset paper. Characteristics of enterprises and development strategies
      3. Woodfree Coated papers
      4. Papers for books and magazines
        1. Coated papers for books and magazines
        2. Uncoated papers for books and magazines
  5. Global market of printing papers. Production and consumption
    1. Principal types of printing papers under internationally accepted classification
    2. Coated papers
    3. Uncoated mechanical papers
    4. Uncoated woodfree papers
    5. Newsprint
  6. Supply of printing papers to publishing and press complex. Role of papers wholesalers (distributors)
  7. Paper pricing and contributing factors
  8. WTO and Customs Union
  9. Customs tariff regulation
  10. Development of publishing business and place of paper information media
  11. Prospects of development of Russian pulp and paper industry


Annex I. List of Tables
Annex II. List of Diagrams

114 pages (RUS, .pdf 1,63 МБ)
September 2012

Источник: Paper Distributors Association



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