CEO Juha Niemelä:Fine paper total demand will increase

The new coating plant at UPM-Kymmene's Kymi Paper was inaugurated on August 5 in Kuusankoski, Finland by Prime Minister Paavo Lipponen. During the inauguration, Mr. Lipponen accelerated the speed of the coating machine, setting a new world record of 2204 m/min flawlessly. The previous world record was 2150 m/min and it was made by Kymi's C3.

"Almost half of the total demand of the printing papers consists of fine papers, forming the largest individual product group within printing papers. In the future, the share of these grades of the total demand will be even larger than today. This is due to strong growth in the end-uses of fine papers and the increased demand for fine papers in the Asian markets", said UPM-Kymmene's President and CEO Juha Niemelä.

Niemelä emphasized the significance of the investment for the company. "Excluding acquisitions, the EUR 280 million investment is UPM-Kymmene's largest investment since the founding of the company in 1996."

The coating unit is used for producing light coated fine papers for high quality magazines and catalogues. The paper has especially been recognized for its high whiteness, good printed gloss and opacity.

The new generation UPM Finesse papers have, so far, been delivered to approximately 250 customers worldwide.

The coating unit includes a re-reeler, two-station Opti-Coater coating unit, a supercalander, a softcalander and a winder. The investment project included the modernization of Kymi's PM 8 into a base paper machine with the latest paper making technology. The rebuild employed 1100 persons at its peak.

In terms of production efficiency, the coating machine is the world-class leader. The average daily output is 1 557 tons and the average daily speed runs at 1785 m/min, thus attaining world records for coating units. Also the supercalander and winder run at world record speeds.

"The production target of 400 000 tons/a will be exceeded in the very near future. This demonstrates our fine ability to plan and execute a project of this magnitude successfully", said the Vice President and General Manager Pertti Asunmaa.


UPM-Kymmene
Corporate Communications
August 5, 2002