The South India Corrugated Box Manufacturers’ Association (SICBMA) has urged the Centre to impose an immediate ban on kraft paper exports of all forms. G Nagaraj, president, SICBMA, said: “There are about 2,000 units in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry engaged in the manufacture of corrugated boxes. They employ nearly one lakh people – about 60% of them are women. “The cost of kraft paper typically accounts for 85% of the production cost of corrugated boxes.
With the steep rise in the price of kraft paper, triggered largely by the export-led shortage, the cost of manufacturing corrugated boxes has risen by 60%.” Nagaraj added that being a highly competitive sector producing an essential packaging product, the box manufacturers work on a very thin margin.
“Most industries can neither accommodate the sudden rise in the raw material cost nor pass it onto the end customers. Unless export is banned and supply of kraft paper is ensured, many industries will have to wrap up their business.” Rajesh Bhatia, who is the president of the Uttar Pradesh Corrugated Box Manufacturers Association, held a press conference in Varanasi.
Bhatia said that in the past three to four months, the price of kraft paper, which is the main raw material deployed in the packaging industry, has increased by almost 60%. The association requested the Varanasi member of parliament and Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi, to look into this matter and take action vis-a-vis the unprecedented rise in the value of kraft paper.