Metsä Fibre has confirmed its decision to invest in building a new bioproduct mill in Äänekoski, Central Finland. Construction work has already begun on this carefully prepared project, with a view to bringing the new mill on stream in the third quarter of 2017. This will be the largest single investment in the history of the Finnish pulp and paper industry, and it demonstrates the company’s supreme confidence in continual development and growth of the sector. Although our product range, our market and our customers continue to evolve, we believe that this investment will maintain our competitiveness and enable us to continue serving as dependable partners of our customers for decades to come.
The new bioproduct mill has been designed to process wood raw material into various end products with optimal efficiency, thereby enhancing our overall competitiveness while minimising energy losses and environmental impacts. The main product will still be pulp for delivery to our present customer base, coupled with continued sales of surplus energy generated in pulp manufacturing. We shall also expand our secondary refining operations to provide the new products described in greater detail in this edition of Echo.
An investment of this kind naturally depends on an assured supply of wood raw material. Finnish forestry, based on the sustainable use of natural forests, has been developed over the centuries. Sustainable logging operations ensure that these forests remain in excellent condition, both for recreational use and as a source of raw material for industry. Finland has the highest proportion of environmentally protected forested lands in Europe, with annual growth of wood stock that substantially exceeds the quantities harvested.
The announcement of this major investment decision also provides an opportunity to thank our customers for their sustained and faithful collaboration, and to reiterate our pledge to serve them as a global leading supplier of top quality softwood pulp sourced from sustainable forestry operations. Together we shall continue our commitment to delivering the Fibres of Success.
CEO, Metsä Fibre Oy