Finnish renewable materials company Stora Enso is planning to convert its Oulu paper mill in Finland into a packaging board production plant.
The company will close paper machine 6 and a sheeting plant at the location by the end of 2020.
In June, Stora Enso announced plans to evaluate development opportunities for the Oulu Mill as it is facing challenges with market demand and profitability for the production of coated wood-free paper.
The company conducted a feasibility study and planned to convert the mill into a packaging board grades plant.
The move is expected to reduce a maximum of 400 employees at the plant. The packaging firm is currently engaging in co-determination negotiations with employees regarding job losses.
The company’s board of directors will make a decision regarding the conversion following the co-determination process in the first half of this year.
Stora Enso expects to invest approximately €350m between 2019 and 2021 to convert paper machine 7 into kraftliner with an annual production capacity of 450,000t. It will also convert the pulp mill and drying machine to produce unbleached brown pulp.
The company will file the environmental application for the conversion later this month.
Beginning on 25 March, the company will begin negotiations with approximately 600 employees working at the location in line with Finland’s co-determination law.
The negotiations include the proposed conversion plan, reorganisation of structures, functions, resources and job roles. The changes are expected to be completed by the end of 2020.