Stora Enso examines rebuild of its Oulu fine paper mill to produce cartonboard and kraftliner

Oulu pulp and paper mill in Finland
photo courtesy of Stora Enso
28 Jun 2018 − 

Continuing woodfree coated paper production at the mill is also an option, the company says.

Stora Enso is examining a major rebuild of its Oulu mill in Finland to switch production from woodfree coated paper to cartonboard and kraftliner. The company has started a feasibility study and an environmental impact assessment for a rebuild of the mill which currently has production capacity of 1.08 million tpy of coated fine paper on two paper machines and 360,000 tpy of softwood pulp and which is thus by far the largest mill in the group. The new production facilities in Oulu could include one board machine with a capacity of 450,000 tpy of unbleached cartonboard and a containerboard production line with a capacity of 400,000 tpy of kraftliner. In addition, the investment in a new chemi thermo-mechanical pulp (CTMP) plant is being examined.

Stora Enso estimates the capital investment at approximately €700m. "Production on the potential new lines would start during 2020. Paper production at the Oulu mill is to be continued at least until early 2020," the company announced.

The alternative to the rebuild would be to continue the current fine paper production. However, if Stora Enso opted for the conversion, this would also mean that the company would completely withdraw from the production of woodfree coated papers. Oulu is the only site within the group still producing this grade after PM 3 at the Varkaus mill, which was able to produce around 285,000 tpy of coated and uncoated fine papers, was converted to kraftliner in 2015. Woodfree uncoated papers are produced at the company's Nymölla (485,000 tpy) and Veitsiluoto (520,000 tpy) mills.

Find the entire article and any associated background information in EUWID Pulp and Paper no. 27.

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