Newspapers face additional threat after domestic newsprint manufacturers hike prices

As if newspapers did not have enough to worry about as a result of the anti-dumping duties levied against imported Canadian newsprint by the Department of Commerce a few weeks ago, they now face additional increased costs from US manufacturers.

The additional significant increases in newspaper costs are a result of domestic paper producers being asked for supply and raising prices on their inventory because of higher demand. In some cases the newsprint manufacturers are telling newspapers they will not be able to fill existing orders.

Paul Boyle, Senior Vice President Public Policy for the News Media Alliance writes about the significance of the threat of the duties and their impact here.

The petitioner requesting that Commerce impose the countervailing and antidumping duties is the North Pacific Paper Corporation(NORPAC), which operates a single mill in Washington State. NORPAC is an outlier that was recently purchased by a New York hedge fund operator, with no additional pulp or paper operations in the United States or globally.

NORPAC’s owners are seeking government protection through trade sanctions. In contrast, the majority of the U.S. newsprint manufacturers, and even the national trade association for the U.S. paper industry – the American Forest and Paper Association – as well as their U.S. customers, oppose this move.

Commerce is scheduled to announce the final determination in its investigation on or about August 2, 2018.

The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) will conduct its final investigation in this case later in the spring and is expected to reach a final determination regarding any injury to the domestic industry by September 2018. The investigation will include surveys of newsprint customers, filing of briefs and holding a public hearing. NMA and NNA are helping to coordinate the responsive efforts for the newspaper industry in these proceedings.

Stay tuned to future Legislative Bulletins to learn how you can help defeat this threat.