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Management Side
UPM to Consider Ways of Restructuring Forestry Work in Finland
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Helsinki, Finland, 11 September 2006 -– UPM will explore the possibility of restructuring its forestry work to improve cost-efficiency. During the autumn, the company will search for prospective partners and assess their ability to offer different types of forestry work services.

In Finland, UPM employs about 300 forestry workers, whose job mainly consists of cultivating forests and tending seedlings and saplings. In addition, forestry workers also carry out some measuring and planning work. The planned shift towards the use of purchased services would mean that UPM would no longer employ forestry workers. Co-determination negotiations will be conducted with personnel to discuss plans regarding the restructuring and developing of forestry work.

UPM's objective is that the company's forestry workers would be taken on as employees by companies providing forestry work services. Finland has several service provider companies that can employ forestry workers all year round thanks to their wide-ranging service offering. UPM is also ready to support its forestry workers who are willing to establish themselves as self-employed service providers. The company has already been using external services alongside its own forestry workers for many years.

"We want to begin co-operating so as to put us in a better position to develop the practical forest work. Our objectives are to promote the full employment of forestry workers all year round, increase the attractiveness of forestry work and improve the availability of services," says Sixten Sunabacka, Vice President, Forestry and Wood Sourcing in Finland.

Wood harvesting is nowadays almost completely mechanised, and UPM purchases harvesting service from local contractors. Traditional manual logging is only required in some exceptional cases. "As a result of this change in the forestry worker's job profile, UPM can offer forestry workers less and less work in wintertime. We have been compelled to lay off most of the forestry workers for longer periods in winter and have not been able to eliminate this problem through the introduction of flexible work time schedules, either," says Sunabacka.

UPM owns 920,000 hectares of forestry land in Finland and has concluded a significant number of forest service contracts with private forest owners. UPM will continue to offer and develop versatile forest services to private forest owners. The restructuring is aimed at producing better quality and more competitive forest services and improving the profitability of forestry operations.
 

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