Metso to supply newsprint machine to Ecco of UK

May 15, 2007 - Metso Paper said that it has signed a letter of intent with Ecco Development Limited to supply a newsprint line, PM1, for Ecco Newsprint's new recycled newsprint mill in Teesside, England.

The agreement also includes an order for Metso to begin engineering work.

The value of the deal was not disclosed.

The project is subject to Ecco's execution of a number of related agreements for the financing, construction and operation of the mill, which are said to be in the advanced satges. Ecco has already been granted planning consent by Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council permitting construction to start at Ecco's site at Wilton International on Teesside, Metso said.

According to a report on printweek.com, currently, only about one third of the 2.65 million tonnes of newsprint used in the UK is produced there.

“There is a huge amount of import at the moment," said Marcus Moir, managing director at Ecco Newsprint. "Our figures show only around 34% of newsprint used in the UK is produced here. Customers are concerned that the UK cannot feed itself.”

“New capacity is likely to be absorbed by continued growth in tonnage due to new applications for newsprint and some further capacity reductions, Moir explained..

“Around 300,000 tonnes of material is coming in from Canada now. But with several of the UK’s largest publishers upgrading their presses, older paper machines making virgin fibre-based material may find it harder to meet customers’ increasing quality requirements,” he added

Ecco's new mill is slated for start-up in the first quarter of 2009.

SOURCE: Metso Paper and printweek.com

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