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Metsä Group and Dasos acquire nature sites for Metsä Groups owner-members interested in FSC
FINLAND (News release) -- Metsä Group acquires nature sites that are used to compensate for the conservation areas required of forest owners by the FSC® forest certification. The new service offered to owner-members ensures that the conservation required of forest estates belonging to the FSC forest certification group is aimed at the most valuable nature sites. Metsä Group's partner in the acquisition of nature sites is the Dasos Habitat fund managed by Dasos Capital Oy. Key investors in the fund are Elo Mutual Pension Insurance Company, LocalTapiola and the Finnish Cultural Foundation.

A requirement for the FSC forest certification is that at least 5% of the forest land of the associated forest estate is permanently excluded from forest use.

The FSC defines which types of sites are always conserved. In practice, an estate being associated with FSC does not necessarily have 5% of the types of sites that are always conserved. This means that the forest owner has to conserve ordinary forest so that the 5% conservation requirement is fulfilled.

Metsä Group and the Dasos Habitat fund work together to acquire forest estates that include connected nature sites defined as valuable by the FSC. The estates are incorporated into Metsä Group's FSC group certification. Metsä Group offers valuable nature sites on these estates to owner-members belonging to the FSC group that don't have valuable nature sites themselves. These nature sites are used to compensate for the conservation area required of the forest owner.

The service is available for Metsä Group's owner-members.

The director of FSC Finland, Anna Ylä-Anttila, estimates that the service helps to cover for the shortage of supply of FSC certified wood in Finland by making FSC certification a more tempting option for small forest estate owners. According to Ylä-Anttila, conservation may become much more efficient as valuable and connected forest areas are found and conserved. At best, everyone wins with this arrangement.

Metsä Forest is the market leader in wood trade and forest energy in Finland. It is responsible for Metsä Group's wood supply and provides the owner-members of the parent company, Metsäliitto Cooperative, with extensive services in wood trade as well as forest and nature management. Metsäliitto Cooperative has approximately 103,000 members, who own nearly half of the private forest area in Finland.

Dasos Capital Oy Ltd is natural capital and timberland investment management company based in Helsinki, Finland.

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