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Tag Archives: exports

Lockdowns and shipping strife snarl scrap exports

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Cargo ship container port at dusk.

Lingering impacts from the shipping disruptions of January and February still plague the movement of recyclables out of the U.S. | DifferR/Shutterstock

Overseas markets for recovered paper and plastic are experiencing disruption as countries enact widespread restrictions, close ports and see reduced demand alongside larger economic slowdown.

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Device resellers see ‘unprecedented demand’

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A person seated at a laptop with a headset.

IT asset disposition company EPC reported a sharp increase in demand for notebook, tablet and desktop PCs throughout the U.S. and Canada as the need to work from home grows. | Sally B/Shutterstock

Electronics recycling and reuse companies across the U.S. say the coronavirus and resulting work-from-home orders have energized the market for refurbished electronics. In some cases, they can’t keep up with the needs of customers.

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Coronavirus pandemic disrupts recycling sector

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Even as the vast majority of municipalities have not made changes to recycling service, the coronavirus impact has been felt in programs around the country. | VO IMAGES/Shutterstock

The global escalation of COVID-19 is hampering some North American recycling programs, impacting Chinese users of U.S. recovered fiber, constraining global shipping, denting stock prices and threatening an economic recession.

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Fiber end users continue to evolve with export markets

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Fiber bales

During recent earnings calls, a number of fiber company executives touched on pricing trends they are seeing around OCC and other grades.

One major U.S. mill operator is actively shipping recycled paper pulp to China, and another is installing equipment to bring in lower grades of paper feedstock. Those were a few takeaways from recent earnings calls from publicly traded paper firms.

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China moves to relax recycled paper tariffs

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export containers

With newly announced process, Chinese importers can apply for tariff exemptions beginning this week. | Sumrit Tesrumphun/Shutterstock

The Chinese government will consider exempting tariffs on OCC and other recovered fiber on a company-by-company basis. Meanwhile, a tariff on U.S. recycled paper pulp shipments into China has been lifted for one year.

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Chinese paper import permits trend lower

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Baled fiber stacked for recycling.

So far this year China has approved 3.5 million short tons of recovered fiber for import. | luca pbl/Shutterstock

China recently issued its third round of recovered fiber import permits for 2020, and the volume being allowed in this round is far less than what was approved previously.

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China’s overall paper imports dropped another 39% last year

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OCC and other recovered fiber grades are allowed in to China but with strict contamination thresholds. | noomcpk/Shutterstock

China bought less of the world’s recycled fiber in 2019, the second year in a row of major decreases in recycled material imports. And the country’s environmental ministry has reiterated plans for an all-out import ban next year.

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