Norske Skog Tasman Considers Capacity Closure

Lysaker, Finland 23 August 2012 -- Norske Skog considers curtailing production capacities at Norske Skog Tasman (NST) in New Zealand to adapt output to falling newsprint demand. The company currently evaluates the closure of one paper machine at the Tasmanian subsidiary NST, which would halve the output of the mill to 150,000 tpy. Norske Skog attributes this move to a weakening demand in Australasia region and a fierce competition between newsprint suppliers in export markets in Asia.

The final decision on capacity closure at Norske Skog Tasman has not been made yet, Norske Skog said. “The evaluation process is expected to be completed in the third quarter.”

Norske Skog Tasman runs two paper machines, producing over 300,000 tpy of newsprint, improved newsprint and directory paper. The company is a major player at the domestic market and exports more than a half of its output to Australia and Asia.

Some 290 people are currently employed at the mill. How many jobs would be affected by a potential machine closure was still to be determined in negotiations with employee representatives, the company said.