24 Mar 2006

Cartel allegation without foundation

Norske Skog has rejected allegations reportedly made by an Indian member of parliament that the company is involved in an illegal cartel in India to drive up paper prices.

"We regard this claim as without foundation," says Hanne Aaberg, senior vice president for corporate communications at Norske Skog, in response to the report from Norwatch.
According to estimates by the Pulp and Paper Products Council (PPPC), Indian demand for newsprint rose by about 13 per cent from 2004 to 2005. Norske Skog has about five per cent of this market.
Newsprint prices in India are on a par with those in the USA, and have increased by about 12 per cent over the past year compared with a rise of roughly 13 per cent in America.
"These are serious allegations," says Ms Aaberg. "Although we are confident that they are groundless, we will take them up directly with the member of parliament concerned in order to clear the matter up."
Oxen°en 24 March 2006
Norske Skog
Corporate communications