Worldwide shortage of thermal paper as China closes 40% of its factories

In 2013, China passed the “10 Measures for Environmental Protection”. An effort by The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) to improve the country’s environmental problems. This was a turning point in China’s history as they finally began addressing the damage caused by their economic development at the expense of air and water quality.

According to the Chinese Ministry of Health, industrial pollution has made cancer China’s leading cause of death. Every year, ambient air pollution alone killed hundreds of thousands of citizens. Additionally, 500 million people in China are without safe and clean drinking water.

China held its 19th Party Congress in Beijing from October 18–25, 2017, a twice-per-decade event to set the party’s national policy goals and elect its top leadership. Coincidentally, Environmental Protection is one of the key issues to be examined.

Some say it would make sense to do a bit of cleaning before the meeting to drum up the numbers and also produce some blue skies for the CCP to take credit for. Similar supply chain disruptions in China related to major economic, political, and social events have happened in 2016 in the months preceding the G-20 meetings in Hangzhou as well as in 2008 before the Beijing Olympics.

Whatever the reason may be, estimates of the crackdown suggest as much as 40 percent of China’s factories have been temporarily closed by safety inspectors, with officials from more than 80,000 factories charged with criminal offences for breaching emissions limits over the past year.

As such, we want to make you aware of a very real global shortage of thermal paper and significant increasing prices. The world’s global thermal coating mills have been forced to limit their tonnage due to the now eminent worldwide shortage of Leuco dye, an essential component in the coating of thermal paper. We have been told this worldwide supply and demand condition could last all the way through early summer of 2018.

Thankfully, our sources of thermal paper are secure, allowing us to provide you with a steady supply. Our prices will be impacted, and will steadily rise throuhout early 2018 with an immediate impact of 15% as of January 1st. We will be happy to answer any additional questions you may have here

Until next time

Wedge Labels