Montreal, Quebec, Canada 05 November 2013 -- A hundred-year-old paper machine that makes specialty and construction grades at Resolute Forest Products’ Iroquois Falls mill will be permanently shut down within six months. About 70 employees will be affected by the closure.
The northern Ontario mill will continue to make newsprint on PM8.
A statement from Resolute explains that PM1 was operating at less than 60% of its annual production capacity. In 2012, it produced approximately 30,000 tonness of specialty and construction grade papers. The markets for these construction grades are limited. Demand has been declining over the past few years and is expected to continue to decrease, says Resolute.
As a single-machine operation, according to Resolute, Iroquois Falls will enhance operating efficiency, drive down costs and ensure its competitive position. This action will also support job security for the workforce tied to the operation of the newsprint machine.
The Iroquois Falls mill currently employs close to 240. By the time PM1 closes, approximately 60-70 impacted workers will be eligible for or close to retirement. Following the machine closure, employees who will be retained at the mill will transition to new work duties and will be provided necessary training. Where possible, the company will work in cooperation with other Resolute operations to relocate employees.
Iroquois Falls has a population of about 4700. Resolute is one of the town’s largest employers.