The employment effects of Kemi bioproduct mill are wide-ranging

​The new bioproduct mill in Kemi will secure jobs of current mill for decades. As a whole, the mill will employ approximately 2,500 people in Finland.


​Metsä Fibre employs approximately 500 people in the mill area, and directly in the mill 250 people. The lifespan of the mill is 30–40 years, so jobs will be secure for several decades.

“A project of this scale gives a boost to the community; it brings publicity, security and stability. Our investment would be a long-term source of employment in Kemi,” says Project Director Jari-Pekka Johansson.

As a whole, the mill will employ approximately 2,500 people in Finland. 1,500 of these jobs will be new, mainly related to forest harvesting and transportation. The job-creating effect of the construction phase will be nearly 10,000 work years, of which more than half will be performed in Kemi. The Finnish origin of the construction project will be around 70 per cent.

“Based on the current information, that figure seems to be correct. It is great to see that Finnish companies are competitive,” says Johansson.

Jobs also for small and medium-sized enterprises

The main implementation partners of Kemi bioproduct mill are Valmet for the main equipment and automation, ABB for electrical systems, AFRY for project management and engineering services, and Fimpec for construction. 

Small and medium-sized enterprises can get involved either directly or as subcontractors.

The Äänekoski project involved organising tender competitions for approximately 100 construction contracts, 300 equipment and installation supply contracts, and 5,000 purchase orders. The Kemi project will be of a similar scale.

Project expertise is improved continuously

Metsä Fibre’s project expertise has increased through various major projects over the decades. The Kemi bioproduct mill project involves actors from all the previous mill projects in Rauma, Joutseno, Uruguay and Äänekoski. The core group consists of approximately 60 persons.

“We value sharing our expertise, so there are also new people involved. We improve our work continuously: after every project we always think about what we could develop,” Johansson says.

Constructing a factory requires systematic effort; everything is recorded in the operating instruction during the planning, and the roadmap for the project indicates how the project will be implemented.

“Project work is to a large extent a matter of communication: when everyone knows the goal, they work towards it and do their job well. The schedule is the starting point for everything. After that, it is essential to keep an eye on intermediate deadlines in order to keep to the overall schedule.”

This article was originally published in Fibre magazine issue 2020–2021. Read the whole article.

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