Tokyo, Japan, 01 February 2011 -- Mitsui and Co., Ltd., has acquired all shares in Hansol PI Pty Ltd. (HPI), which processes and exports woodchips in Western Australia, and Great Southern Timber Holdings Pty Limited (GSTH), which is involved in forestry projects, through its Melbourne-based Australian subsidiary Mitsui Bussan Woodchip Oceania Pty. Ltd. (MWO). As a result of this transaction, Mitsui has created the framework for its own value chain business covering all stages from forest planting to woodchip processing and exporting.
HPI is a woodchip processing and exporting company headquartered in Perth, the capital of Western Australia. It has earned an excellent international reputation as a producer of FSC-certified woodchips, which it supplies to several paper manufacturers in Japan from its processing plant in Bunbury, about 200 km south of Perth. GSTH is developing an FSC-certified eucalyptus plantation on approximately 14,000 hectares of land at Bunbury.
Mitsui owns a woodchip processing and exporting joint venture in partnership with an Australian company at Portland, Victoria. The acquisition of HPI and GSTH will further strengthen its business base in Australia, which is the world's biggest supplier of woodchips.
Demand for woodchips, which are made from renewable forestry resources, is expected to expand in the future because of the growth of Asian economies, and because of the increasing use of woodchips as an environment-friendly biomass material.
Through this business, Mitsui aims to help the paper manufacturing industry, especially in Japan, to maintain reliable access to resources, by making Australia its base for the supply of environment-friendly paper manufacturing materials.