Australia faces a critical shortage of paper supplies over Christmas and into the new year due to the anticipated stoppage of paper manufacturing at a major paper mill. Due to unforeseen circumstances outside of their control, hundreds of office products stores and newsagents across Australia are expected to run out of paper products over the coming weeks. This will impact thousands of small and medium enterprises, educational institutions and consumers.
What is the cause of paper shortage?
Adam Joy, CEO of Office Brands said, “The suspension of timber harvesting in Victoria as a result of a court injunction on the Victorian Government-owned timber company VicForests, means that a major local paper manufacturer is expected to stop production in the coming days. This will have a serious and immediate impact on paper supplies across the country.”
Office Brands, together with the Australian Lottery and Newsagents Association, Group Newsagent Supplies and Office Choice has written to the Minister for Industry, Ed Husic, seeking his intervention to temporarily suspend anti-dumping duties on paper imported.
What can be done to fix the situation?
“Our members have proven their resilience over the past couple of years as they have evolved to address supply issues in challenging times to meet the needs of their customers. This current situation is a kick in the guts and comes at the worst possible time,” Joy said.
“Everyone remembers the toilet paper shortages. We fear a repeat of this fiasco for paper products if the government doesn’t step in now to open up paper supplies. The anti-dumping system is intended to address the importation of goods dumped into Australia. Unfortunately, Australian owned small businesses that we represent are suffering because of its unintended consequences, as it is severely limiting our ability to provide affordable paper products.”
“We are calling on the Australian Government to use its powers under the Customs Act and ensure affordable paper supplies can be secured so that customers aren’t left empty handed.”