Boxboard Markets in Americas to Show Impact of US/China Trade Tensions

China waste paper import limits could boost US domestic producers, plus Brazil/Chile exports, says study

Boston, August 7, 2018 (Press Release) – For the Americas’ boxboard sector, the big news comes from China’s ongoing waste-paper import restrictions. These policies have created a fiber deficit of at least 6 million tonnes for China’s boxboard producers – a shortfall expected to sharply reduce Chinese exports. The ripple effects of these disruptions on markets throughout the Americas are explored by the World Boxboard Study: Americas, a study published today by RISI, the leading information provider for the global forest products industry.

“China’s boxboard industry has been heavily dependent on waste paper imports from the US,” said Abdulla Zaid, RISI Economist for North American Packaging and co-author of the new study. “Much of its output was then exported back to the US market, but going forward, we forecast that China’s fiber deficit will reduce its market share. Also, much of the waste paper that would have been sent to China is now available for US producers, lowering their production costs,” continued Zaid.

“Brazil and Chile, as relatively low-cost producers, are positioned to strongly increase their exports as China retreats,” explained Amanda Fantinatti, study co-author and RISI Economist for Latin American Packaging. “This could help the South American boxboard industry cope with political and economic uncertainty in Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, and other important markets. Trade flows of key substrates throughout the Americas could shift significantly through 2022 and beyond,” said Fantinatti.

The World Boxboard Study: Americas provides grade-level demand, supply and trade data and analysis of the region’s cartonboard markets. The new study, along with companion reports for Europe and Asia to be released later in 2018, builds its forecasts around a proprietary grade classification system that enables comparative analysis worldwide.

“Boxboard grades are not defined and labeled consistently in every major market,” explained Ken Waghorne, RISI Vice President for Global Packaging. “This means that the global outlook for boxboard cannot be determined by simply adding up regional totals. The World Boxboard Study enables accurate comparisons – and forecasts – across all key global markets.”

For more information on this new study, visit

About RISI (
RISI is the leading information provider for the global forest products industry. The company works with clients in the pulp and paper, packaging, wood products, timber, biomass, tissue and nonwovens industries to help them make better decisions. Headquartered in Boston, MA, RISI operates additional offices throughout North and South America, Europe and Asia and is a subsidiary of Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC, a global business-to-business price reporting & information group (



For Press Inquiries, please contact:
Alan Petrillo
RISI Communications, Special Studies
O: 781-778-7592

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