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20 Oct.2016

Paper recycling chain exceeds its voluntary commitment

European Paper Recycling at 71.5% in 2015

The paper recycling rate in Europe reached an impressive 71.5% as announced by the European Recovered Paper Council (ERPC) in their final monitoring report for 2015. Compared to 2010, collection and recycling has increased by almost one million tonnes of paper. This is due in part to the excellent work of the ERPC.

The 2015 European paper recycling rate of 71.5% is 1.5% higher than the target set by the ERPC in the 3rd European Declaration on Paper Recycling for the period 2010-2015. We are proud to report on the impressive work completed, following the pledge it first made in 2000 to expand paper recycling in Europe.

“The efforts of the ERPC perfectly complement EU policy on Circular Economy. The paper fibre loop can serve as the perfect model for circularity”, says ERPC Chairman Henri Vermeulen. “All 13 ERPC associations are proud to be part of a value chain ‘Made in Europe’, prolonging value creation and job opportunities”, he added.

In addition to the quantitative progress, a lot of qualitative work was done, particularly with initiatives to facilitate the recycling process and increase recycling activity. These notably include collection and applying ecodesign to paper products.

For the commitment period of 2011 to 2015, EY has independently verified the recycling rate calculations. Currently, a new ambitious commitment for 2016-2020 is being prepared. This will keep the industry moving on its path towards ever-higher recycling rates.

For more information, please contact the ERPC Secretariat, Ulrich Leberle, at +32 2 627 49 23, or visit

Notes to Editor:

  • Download link for the 2015 Monitoring Report: 
  • The European Recovered Paper Council (ERPC) was a self-initiative set up in November 2000 to monitor progress towards meeting the paper recycling targets set out in the 2000 European Declaration on Paper Recycling. Since then the commitments in the Declaration are renewed every five years. In 2011 the ERPC committed itself to meeting and maintaining both a voluntary recycling rate target of 70% in the EU27 plus Switzerland and Norway by 2015 as well as reaching qualitative targets in areas such as waste prevention, ecodesign, and R&D.
  • As of 2016, ERPC’s signatories are ACE, CEPI, CITPA, EMFA, ERPA, ETS, FEPE, INGEDE, INTERGRAF. The supporters are AFERA, EuPIA, FINAT and RADTECH Europe. The European Commission (DG Environment and DG Grow) are permanent observers to ERPC.



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13 Oct.2016

ETS Review: European paper industry commends rejection of tiered approach

Today’s vote in the European Parliament marks a major stepping stone for the ETS review.

“This message reads loud and clear:

NO to a tiered approach on carbon leakage and YES to a dynamic and predictable benchmark’s reduction

says Nicola Rega, Climate Change and Energy Director representing the Confederation of European Paper Industries (CEPI).

The proposed flexibility in setting the auction share together with proposed solutions to help member states with compensation for indirect carbon costs and the wider-ranging fund for innovation are also welcomed by our industry.

We recognise the efforts made towards reaching a broad political agreement embracing almost all the political groups. This is a very positive signal as it demonstrates the strong consensus behind this vote. We fully congratulate the rapporteur, Frederik Federley and shadow rapporteurs Esther de Lange, Edouard Martin and Hans-Olaf Henkel for their commitment to achieving a common position.

Although these are positive developments, more work needs to be done to address the text’s shortcomings, particularly on benchmarks, the impact of the cross-sectoral correction factor and on effective compensation for indirect costs across Europe.

A significant investment challenge lies ahead for European manufacturing industry to transform its production base and regain competitiveness. We will constructively engage with policy-makers to ensure industry’s viability and that the ETS rewards low-carbon investments. We urge the ENVI Committee to seize the opportunity to build upon ITRE’s lead and to put the ETS on a pro-investment track.

For more information, please contact Nicola Rega at or by mobile: (+32) 26274918

Note to the Editor

CEPI aisbl - The Confederation of European Paper Industries

The Confederation of European Paper Industries (CEPI) is a Brussels-based non-profit organisation regrouping the European pulp and paper industry and championing the industry’s achievements and the benefits of its products. Through its 18 member countries (17 European Union members plus Norway) CEPI represents some 505 pulp, paper and board producing companies across Europe, ranging from small and medium sized companies to multi-nationals, and 920 paper mills. Together they represent 23% of world production.





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12 Oct.2016

Joint Statement: Working Group on the future direction of FOREST EUROPE

European forest owners, managers and forest-based industries released a joint statement today, outlining key elements to be included in the review of the FOREST EUROPE process to ensure Sustainable Forest Management (SFM), at the first meeting of the working group on the future direction of the FOREST EUROPE in Bratislava.

European forest owners, managers and forest-based industries released a joint statement today outlining key elements to be included in the review of the FOREST EUROPE process to ensure Sustainable Forest Management (SFM) at the first meeting of the working group on the future direction of the FOREST EUROPE in Bratislava.

The signatories of the joint statement acknowledge the importance of the FOREST EUROPE process for the development and implementation of SFM in European forests. In the 1990s, European Forest Ministers gathered to share their concerns about the health of European forests and to seek solutions to improve it. Since then, FOREST EUROPE has helped to ensure that we have well functioning forest monitoring systems, research programmes, gene banks and advanced forest fire prevention systems. It also contributed to the global forest agenda agreed at the UNCED Rio Summit in 1992. It enables SFM to be economically viable at the same time as protecting forest biodiversity, soils, water sources, the use of forest biomass for bioenergy and other purposes. Last but not least, it succeeded in opening a completely new chapter on discussing a legally binding framework for Europe’s forests.

However, it is important to review the FOREST EUROPE process to ensure that today’s challenges in the forest and forest-based sector, which are more complex and demanding than ever, can be met. European forest owners, managers and industries therefore welcome the set-up of the working group on the future direction of FOREST EUROPE. The signatories of the joint statement believe that FOREST EUROPE needs to be able to respond to current and emerging challenges and opportunities, such as climate change, bio- and circular economy, sustainable sourcing of bioenergy, as well as green capital and the marketing of ecosystem services. It is crucial to strengthen FOREST EUROPE now to further develop the sustainable management of European forests and their multi-purpose use for the benefit of everyone. The signatories of the joint statement call for FOREST EUROPE to demonstrate leadership in this regard.

One of the biggest merits of FOREST EUROPE, which involves 46 European governments, the European Commission as well as numerous forest sector stakeholders and other international organizations, is that it enables stakeholders to have open and constructive dialogue. European forest owners, managers and industries will play an active part in the review process and contribute to the elaboration of a report by the end of 2017 to ensure that FOREST EUROPE is stronger and more effective in the future.

The joint statement was issued by major public and private forest owners, managers, other land owners and forest-based industries, represented by the Confederation of European Forest Owners (CEPF), European Farmers and European Agri-Cooperatives (COPA and COGECA), European Landowners’ Organization (ELO), European State Forest Association (EUSTAFOR), European Federation of Municipal Forest Owners (FECOF), and Union of Foresters of Southern Europe (USSE), the Confederation of European Paper Industries (CEPI) and the European Confederation of Woodworking Industries (CEI-Bois).

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06 Oct.2016

The European paper industry welcomes the European Parliament’s call for new measures on food packaging

The European paper and board industry welcomes the European Parliament report by the rapporteur Christel Schaldemose MEP on implementation of the Framework Regulation on Food Contact Materials In particular, the paper-based packaging value chain supports the strong call by the Parliament to develop a measure specific to the paper and board materials.

Paper and board is the most sustainable packaging material in Europe. In food application paper-based packaging is number one with 13.8 million tonnes annually.

A well-functioning internal market is key for the paper and board industry, its customers and consumers alike. Yet, until now, specific food contact measures have been developed for only three materials (plastics, ceramics and regenerated cellulose) as well as for active and intelligent packaging. In the absence of common EU rules diverging national measures are now seriously hampering the internal market. These inconsistencies have created legal uncertainty and risks for the entire value chain, and hinder consumers’ confidence in food safety.

The paper industry has always prioritised consumer safety and has set world-class standards for producing safe packaging materials. But it cannot replace the role of the legislator in setting a level playing field and European-wide levels for safety.

In recent years industry has heavily invested in scientific research and is conducting ambitious work on supporting future legal measure thereby extensively upgrading its guidelines for food contact material. We can build upon the latest scientific knowledge, industry state of art practices and European Food Safety Authority’s approach to ensure a high level of consumer protection across Europe.

For more information, please contact Jori Ringman at or by mobile: +32 (0) 478 255 070 or Krassimira Kazashka-Hristozova at or by mobile: +32 478 73 82 80

Note to the Editor

Paper & board is based on organic fibres from wood and other biomass sources. Paper material is biodegradable, renewable and readily recyclable. When used for product packaging paper is frequently with a combination of materials including foil, plastic or wax. These combinations are always tailor-made and are produced in the most resource-efficient manner whilst considering their functionality. In respect of packaging for transport, corrugated board which has significant levels of recycled material, is generally used. The paper-based packaging value chain consists of:


CEPI (Confederation of European Paper Industries) is a Brussels-based non-profit organisation regrouping the European pulp and paper industry and championing the industry’s achievements and the benefits of its products. Through its 18 member countries (17 European Union members plus Norway) CEPI represents some 505 pulp, paper and board producing companies across Europe, ranging from small and medium sized companies to multi-nationals, and 920 paper mills. Together they represent 23% of world production. Website:


CITPA, International Confederation of Paper and Board Converters in Europe established in 1961, represents the interests of the European Paper and Board Converting Industry which covers a wide variety of converted paper products including packaging, corrugated board and many more. CITPA membership comprises European level associations such as EUROSAC, FEFCO, FINAT, ECTA and ECMA as well as National Federations such as Austria, Belgium, Germany, Italy and Portugal and associate members ProCarton, and Cepi Eurokraft. Website:


FEFCO (European Federation of Corrugated Board Manufacturers) was established in 1952 and represents the interests of the European Corrugated Board Manufacturers. Headquartered in Brussels, FEFCO has 20 active members, all European national corrugated packaging organisations. FEFCO members represent about 412 companies operating over 700 production sites and directly employing over 91 000 people. The Corrugated Board production is approximately 43.4 billion m2 per year, used mainly as transport, secondary or primary packaging to protect variety of products. The role of the Federation is to investigate economic, financial, technical and marketing issues of interest to the corrugated packaging Industry, to analyse all factors which may influence the industry, and to promote and develop its image. Website:

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19 Sep.2016

European Paper Week 2016 registration is open

European Paper Industry – Navigating towards the future

The Confederation of European Paper Industries (CEPI) has kicked off registration for European Paper Week (EPW), taking place on 22-24 November in Brussels. The event will offer for the 18th time a unique opportunity to liaise with the movers and shakers in the European paper industry. This year, it promises exciting new features: more networking opportunities with a welcome cocktail, a new location at the Radisson Blu Royal Hotel in Brussels city centre and a focus on the key topic of future employee skills and education, to name but a few.

“European Paper Industry - Navigating towards the future” will be the overriding theme. Our sector is navigating in stormy weather, facing a significantly challenging political and economic climate. However, it has a clear vision for 2050. Indeed, EPW will see the launch of a reviewed 2050 Roadmap, examining 80% decarbonisation with 50% added value, five years after the highly-popular first edition.

CEPI is honoured to have Financial Times chief foreign affairs commentator Gideon Rachman, as the moderator of the main EPW session. He and London Business school professor Lucrezia Reichlin will give valuable insights on the global economy and its impact on our industry. In addition, we will look deeply into the means to ensure the sector receives the necessary future investments.

This year’s event will also be the first for recently-appointed CEPI Director General, Sylvain Lhôte, at the helm of the association since the beginning of September. With many years of experience in Brussels and other industries and a newcomer in the sector, Sylvain is ready to make a mark, starting at EPW.

A detailed programme and registration information are available at If you need any further information don’t hesitate to email us at

The event will be held in conjunction with the PPI 2016 Awards, taking place on 21 November.

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04 Jul.2016

European paper industry: Structural change continues, overall positive performance

In 2015, the European paper industry’s performance in total was second best in the world after China, with a stable production and increased consumption compared to 2014. The packaging sector’s production continued to increase whilst graphic paper (newsprint, printing and writing paper) maintained its recent decline. This and other figures can be found in the Confederation of European Paper Industries (CEPI)’s recently-launched 2015 Key Statistics brochure, which gives a clear picture of the industry’s performance last year. The report includes data on production, consumption and the trade of pulp, paper and raw materials, as well as on energy and environment.

Here are the main highlights of the report:
- CEPI members produced 90.9 million tonnes of paper and board. This corresponds to a slight decrease of 0.2% in 2014 and relative stability over the last three years. The operating rate for 2015 was 91.2%, up from 89.7% in 2014.

- Graphic grades (newsprint, writing and printing paper) represented 38.8% of all paper and board produced in Europe in 2015, packaging grades 49.0%, sanitary and household papers 7.9% and speciality grades 4.3%.

- The overall output performance of CEPI countries in total was slightly better than in most other major traditional paper producing regions of the world, with a fall in production recorded in all regions except China. Paper and board production decreased in Brazil (-0.5%), South Korea (-0.9%), the USA (-1.0%), Japan (-1.0%) and Canada (-7.4%). Production in China rose by 2.3% compared to 2014.

- Consumption rose for the second year in a row by 0.5% compared to 2014, totalling 77.4 million tonnes. The economic recovery observed in the EU28 and the euro area in 2015 - annual GDP increase by 2.0% and 1.7% respectively (source: Eurostat) - had a positive impact on paper and board demand.

- CEPI countries maintained an overall positive paper and board trade balance (exports exceeding imports) of 13.5 million tonnes in 2015, compared to 14.0 million tonnes in 2014.

- Market pulp production fell by 0.7% compared to 2014, with an output of 13.1 million tonnes.

Ernst & Young issued a limited assurance statement on the data quality rating that CEPI carried out on its core indicators in the statistics report. You can download it as well as the Key Statistics report in PDF format from CEPI’s website at or request your own paper copy by sending an email to

More detailed statistical information is available to non-CEPI members by subscription. A full report can be ordered by contacting Ariane Crèvecoeur, by telephone +32 (0)2 62749 35 or email at or Eric Kilby at

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23 Jun.2016

European paper industry announces new Director General, Sylvain Lhôte

CEPI (Confederation of European Paper Industries) hereby announces the appointment of Sylvain Lhôte as its new Director General. As of 5 September 2016, Sylvain Lhôte will take over from the current Acting Director General, Jori Ringman. Mr Lhôte is currently Vice-president Governmental Affairs in Europe for Alcoa, the leading aluminium and light metals engineering group.

“We are very pleased to welcome Sylvain Lhôte on board and are sure his leadership and expertise will help CEPI reach ever higher levels of excellence. We are thankful to both Marco Mensink for his work during his mandate and Jori Ringman, who ensured the smooth functioning of the organisation until the new Director General was found”, said Peter Oswald, CEPI Chairman.

Prior to joining Alcoa, Sylvain directed EU and sustainability affairs for the Borealis Group, in the base chemicals and plastics industry and led a global CSR programme for the company in the EMEA region. He previously chaired the Fleishman-Hillard Public Affairs practice in Europe and headed its environment department, advising major trade associations and industries in the field of sustainability policies and public affairs strategies. Sylvain began his career in parliamentary cabinets at the European Parliament and the French National Assembly.

French national, Sylvain studied political sciences, international law and business administration at Strasbourg and Paris-Sorbonne Universities and post-graduated cum laude in European Administration at the College of Europe in Bruges.

For more information, please contact Annie Xystouris at mobile: +32(0)486243642.

Note to the Editor

CEPI aisbl - The Confederation of European Paper Industries
The Confederation of European Paper Industries (CEPI) is a Brussels-based non-profit organisation regrouping the European pulp and paper industry and championing the industry’s achievements and the benefits of its products. Through its 18 member countries (17 EU members plus Norway) CEPI represents some 505 pulp, paper and board producing companies across Europe, ranging from small and medium sized companies to multi-nationals, and 920 paper mills. Together they represent 23% of world production.

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18 Apr.2016

Global Forest Products Industry is Part of the Solution to Climate Change

São Paulo – The International Council of Forest and Paper Associations (ICFPA) and its members welcome the signing of the landmark United Nations agreement to tackle climate change, set to take place on April 22. The agreement urges countries to implement policies that would allow them to keep a global temperature rise below 2 degrees Celsius. The global forest products industry has a highly significant role to play in the implementation of these targets.

“The global forest products industry has made significant strides in reducing its carbon footprint, stocking carbon, and generating greenhouse gas removals – all helping to mitigate climate change”, said ICFPA President and Brazilian Tree Industry (Ibà) President Elizabeth de Carvalhaes. “This agreement is crucial to implementing some of the policies that consider biomass as carbon neutral when harvested from sustainably managed forests and to further recognize all positive contributions that forests and forest products provide in combating climate change.”

The inherently-renewable global forest products industry remains committed to mitigating climate change for the benefit of the green economy and society at large. ICFPA members have achieved an impressive 5% reduction in their greenhouse gas emissions intensity since 2010/2011 and 17% since the 2004-2005 baseline year (2015 ICFPA Sustainability Progress Report).

The European pulp and paper industry has been a global champion in mitigating greenhouse gas emissions. It has set itself in 2011 a clear vision of becoming carbon neutral by 2050 and since then, taken concrete steps to reach that goal,” said Jori Ringman, Acting Director General of Confederation of European Paper Industries (CEPI). “Thanks to responsible sourcing practices and sustainable forest management, the forest area is growing in Europe by an area of over 1,500 football pitches per day. CEPI is pleased to see development in the same direction globally”, he added.

The forest industry’s significant role in mitigating climate change was highlighted in the ICFPA-commissioned report Analysis of Forest Contributions to the INDCs by acclaimed researcher Paulo Canaveira. Having looked at the contributions of forests in the national targets of ICFPA member countries (INDCs) and global mitigation effort from 2020 onwards, the report concludes that many countries identify forests and the land-use sector as relevant to policies and measures implemented to meet their targets. Reducing emissions from deforestation, but also sustainable forest management, afforestation and reforestation are commonly mentioned as key mitigation practices. In some developing countries, they even constitute the country’s main contributions.

Other climate change mitigation efforts of the global forest products industry include supporting national and regional climate policies and programs; investing in technologies with low carbon footprints and ones that improve carbon sequestration; and developing bio-based technologies to find innovative ways to use wood fiber and substitutes for goods traditionally made from fossil fuels.

Note to the editor:

The ICFPA represents more than 30 national and regional forest and paper associations around the world. Together, ICFPA members represent over 90 percent of global paper production and more than half of global wood production.

For more information about the global forest and paper industry, visit

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12 Apr.2016

Bioeconomy 2.0 will help lead the EU’s renewable revolution - with the right support

On the occasion of ‘BioEconomyUtrecht2016’, the fourth Bioeconomy Stakeholders’ Conference, the European Bioeconomy Alliance (EUBA) calls on the EU to lead a worldwide transition towards a renewable, low-carbon economy. Europe has all of the means necessary to become a global leader in the bioeconomy, if its potential is realised and embraced by European policy makers.

The bioeconomy encompasses the sustainable production of renewable resources and their conversion into food, feed, fibres, materials, chemicals and bioenergy through efficient, innovative technologies. It is already worth €2 trillion annually and employs 22 million Europeans, but holds the potential to significantly further boost competitiveness and long-term economic growth. At a time when the pressure is on to deliver on post-Paris climate commitments, the bioeconomy offers a viable solution to today’s fossil carbon equivalents and has the potential to save up to 2.5 billion tonnes of CO2 per year.

In advance of today’s conference, EUBA members, together with other stakeholders in the growing bio-based community have produced a set of recommendations on how Europe can promote bio-based products in public procurement. The report, which will be launched today in Utrecht, outlines what needs to be done at EU, regional and national level to create dynamic new markets for home-grown, EU-sourced bio-based products.

Speaking on behalf of the EUBA, Pekka Pesonen, Secretary General of Copa and Cogeca commented: ‘We are at a pivotal moment in the development of the European bioeconomy. The EU’s strategy is currently being reviewed and we find that we have both great achievements to celebrate as well as some much needed new measures to put in place. Financial tools are needed to boost innovation and investment in existing and new bio-based value chains. In addition, boosting public procurement of bio-based products is one example of how Europe can develop renewable product markets and accelerate the move towards a circular bioeconomy.’

Also speaking on behalf of the Alliance, Jamie Fortescue, Managing Director of Starch Europe, a member of the Primary Food Processors added: ‘Europe has, in abundance, the renewable resources, industrial base and know-how to lead its own bioeconomy revolution. What we now need, to attract more contributors and investment, is open and inclusive discussion underpinned by unwavering, cross-sectoral, political commitment. We want to look back at Utrecht in five years’ time and marvel at what has been achieved in the interim.’

EUBA member EuropaBio’s Industrial Biotech Council Chair, Stephan Tanda, concluded: ‘With the steadfast support and leadership of the European Institutions, the Member States and their regions, huge progress has been made over the past five years with many national authorities setting out their own tailor-made roadmaps towards vibrant and regenerative home-grown bioeconomies. In addition, thanks to the development and launch of the EU’s first ever Bio-based Industries Joint Undertaking for €3.7 billion, ground-breaking cross-sectoral innovation has been given a new lease of life. As a result, we will see new partnerships forming across borders and disciplines in the development of smarter, more sustainable products and processes. The potential is there to be harnessed and, with the right support, Europe will lead the way in the development of a world leading bioeconomy.’

Note to the Editor

BioEconomyUtrecht2016 is taking place 12-13 April in Utrecht, the Netherlands, and is hosted by the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs and the European Commission, under the auspices of the Dutch EU Presidency. The aim of the conference is to explore how Europe can enhance its bioeconomy and input into the review of the European Bioeconomy Strategy that will take place in 2016.

Commission Expert Group for Bio-based Products, Working Group Public Procurement of Bio-based Products, Recommendations 2016:

Innovating for Sustainable Growth: A bioeconomy for Europe:

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05 Apr.2016

The EUBA warns against a tiered approach to the carbon leakage list

A number of the sectors which are fundamental to the implementation of the EU Bioeconomy strategy, represented by the European Bioeconomy Alliance (EUBA), are identified as being subject to the risk of carbon leakage under the Commission’s proposal for the ETS post 2020. These are: starch, oilseeds and protein meals, pulp and paper and sugar. The EUBA supports this approach because there is indeed a real risk that these sectors may relocate their operations outside the EU in the absence of a global level playing field on energy cost.

However the EUBA is also aware of the so-called tiered approach towards carbon leakage put forward by the French and British governments. Under this proposed approach some of the sectors being exposed to carbon leakage would receive more compensation than others. In practise this would mean that fossil-based industries, who are intrinsically most carbon-intensive, would receive 100% free allocation, to the detriment of the sectors which are contributing to the bioeconomy and thus reducing the EU’s fossil fuel dependence (who would receive from 0% to a maximum of 80% free allocation). This would create a competition distortion, undermining efforts to develop renewable bio-based materials to replace fossil fuel based ones.

The objective of the EU Emission Trading System is to combat climate change and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The objective of the European Commission’s bioeconomy strategy, endorsed by both the Council of the EU and the European Parliament, is that fossil fuels should be replaced with “sustainable renewable alternatives as part of the shift to a post-petroleum society”. The objectives are and must remain complementary and consistent.

According to OECD, “the full climate change mitigation potential of biotechnology processes and bio-based products ranges from between 1 billion and 2.5 billion tons CO2 equivalent per year by 20301”.
Both the EU ETS and the EU bioeconomy strategy are fundamental to the European Union's policy to reduce industrial greenhouse gas emissions cost effectively. The EUBA therefore congratulates the European Commission for being consistent and strongly warns against any attempts by Member State governments to undermine that consistency.

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