Demand for paper grade market pulp is expected to grow by 20 million tonnes during 2014-2030. The demand is driven especially by China and the rest of Asia. Finnish companies are well prepared to meet the growing demand: four major bioproduct plant projects are moving ahead fast.
Metsä Group’s new next-generation bioproduct mill at Äänekoski will be the first to respond to the growing demand. Construction is progressing on schedule and the mill will start operating in the third quarter of 2017.
“There is currently a real pulp boom in Finland offering numerous collaboration and investment opportunities. In addition to Metsä Group’s Äänekoski Mill, other major opportunities include, for example, projects by Finnpulp, KaiCell Fibers and Boreal Bioref,” says Jari Tielinen, Senior Advisor at Finpro’s Invest in Finland unit. “We have a unique platform for any wood-based production and partnering. Access to abundant feedstock, world-class technology and competent partners are enabling the growth, which is further facilitated by favourable government policies.”
Finnpulp's bioproduct plant, to be built in Kuopio, Eastern Finland, and the wastewater treatment facility connected to the plant, have been granted the required environmental permit. Production is planned to start in 2020 with an annual capacity of 1.2 million tons of softwood pulp. The plant will also produce other bioproducts, including 60,000 tons of tall oil and 1.5 TWh of bioelectricity per year.
When completed, this will be the world's largest softwood pulp plant and the world’s first Intelligent Bioproduct Plant. In the project phase, the employment effect of the 1.4 billion euro investment is 5,700 full-time work years. The plant will use 6.7 million cubic metres of raw wood material per year. It is designed with new digital systems and utilizes artificial intelligence. The concept will create competitive advantage, for example in managing raw materials and production, plant utilities, efficiency as well as in production and quality optimization.
Finnpulp is currently continuing its investor negotiations and proceeding with the basic plant design. The investment decision is scheduled for the second half of 2018.
KaiCell Fibers is aiming to start bioproduction in Paltamo, Kainuu Region, in 2021. KaiCell has announced its collaboration with CHTC Group, a leading Chinese company in the textile industry and wood-based viscose production. According to Mr. Jukka Kantola, CEO of KaiCell Fibers, the collaboration is a step to strengthen KaiCell Fibers’ and CHTC Group’s joint commitment to build the first ArbronTM plant at the planned bioproducts mill in Paltamo. ArbronTM is a bioproducts unit producing a major volume of novel fibre that will help to resolve serious environmental problems in the textile industry.
It is estimated that the economic benefit of the mill to the Kainuu region would exceed 200 M€/year and the mill would employ about 200 people directly and about 1,000 people indirectly. The investment magnitude would be 900-1000 M€ and the goal is to make the investment decision by the end of 2018.
Boreal Bioref Ltd. is planning to build a bio-refinery in Kemijärvi, Finnish Lapland. Currently, an EIA procedure has been initiated for the project.
In conjunction with the Chinese presidential visit to Finland at beginning of April 2017, Boreal Bioref announced the signing of a mutually binding engineering, procurement, construction (EPC) contract with China CAMC Engineering Co., Ltd. (CAMCE). According to Boreal Bioref, CAMCE will assume responsibility for delivering a turnkey solution for the envisaged bio-refinery. In addition, Boreal Bioref announced that CAMCE shall become a shareholder in Boreal Bioref Ltd. and that an agreement has been signed by CAMCE, Boreal Bioref and the China Development Bank. The agreement covers the financing of the bio-refinery in Kemijärvi.
Interested in hearing more about investment opportunities in these four projects or other bioproduct projects in Finland? Please contact:
Mr Jari Tielinen
Senior Advisor, Finpro - Invest in Finland
Tel. + 358 40 084 9270