Holmen to Permanently Shut Down a Newsprint Machine in Sweden

Holmen's Braviken paper mill outside of Norrkoping, Sweden. Source. Holmen; Photo: Modin Lasse.

March 19, 2013 - Holmen Paper announced that it intends to cease production on PM 51 at its Braviken Paper Mill outside Norrkoping, Sweden during the third quarter of 2013.

Holmen said the mill’s product mix will be improved when the proportion of newsprint shrinks by 200,000 tonnes.

The machine closure will also mean the elimination of 180 jobs.

“We’re forced to shut down parts of our newsprint production,” said Henrik Sjolund, head of Holmen Paper. “Falling demand, pressure on prices, excessively high costs of raw materials and, not least, the strong Swedish krona makes this measure inevitable.

It’s extremely regrettable that it has to affect so many of our employees,” he added.

Holmen said that the restructuring process furthers the company's strategy of focusing its Swedish operations on speciality paper.

“This spring, we’ll be introducing book paper from Braviken while further refining the speciality products that are already being produced today,” Sjölund said. “The measures are part of our change strategy in which we’re developing unique speciality paper that makes the production processes of our customers more cost efficient.”

Following the shutdown of PM 51, Braviken Paper Mill will have about 360 employees and two paper machines with an annual capacity of just under 600,000 tonnes of printing paper.

When the changes currently underway at Holmen Paper are complete, the company estimates that its Swedish units will have the capacity to produce 1,150,000 tonnes of printing paper — 75 percent of which will be specialty paper. And that amount is expected to grow, Holmen added.

SOURCE: Holmen