Resolute to Permanently Shutdown Laurentide Paper Mill in Quebec

Resolute's Laurentide paper mill employs 275, with an annual production capacity of 191,000 metric tons of commercial printing papers.

Sept. 2, 2014 - Resolute Forest Products yesterday announced the permanent closure of its Laurentide paper mill in Shawinigan, Quebec, Canada.

In a press statement the company said, "The restart of a competitor's mill at the end of 2012, the high cost of fiber, as well as higher transportation and fuel costs, have affected the mill's competitiveness."

Richard Garneau, President and CEO of Resolute said, "We made every effort to find a way to improve the Laurentide mill's performance. Unfortunately, due to its cost structure and challenging market conditions, there is no economically viable option for the mill."

On November 26, 2012, Resolute permanently shutdown one of the mill's two paper machines, PM 10, which had the capacity to produce 125,000 metric tons per year of comercial printing papers. At that time, the company explained that a substantial drop in demand and an increase in market capacity of the paper grade produced on PM 10 were factors behind the decision to shutdown the machine.

In operation for over 126 years, the Laurentide mill employs 275, with an annual production capacity of 191,000 metric tons of commercial printing papers on one paper machine, PM 11.

The permanent closure will take effect on or about October 15, 2014.

"The Company understands the impact this decision will have on employees, their families and the local community. Resolute will work with union representatives and government officials to respond to the needs of affected employees and encourage a smooth transition. Management will also ensure that each employee receives support, that the relevant conditions in the collective agreements are respected, and that as many employees as possible are transferred to other Company facilities," Resolute said in its press statement.

"We will do our utmost to ensure employee safety during the transition. We will also work closely with our customers to continue to meet their needs," added Garneau.

SOURCE: Resolute Forest Products