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Stora Enso launches profit protection programme to strengthen competitiveness

Stora Enso is implementing a profit protection programme intended to achieve an annual cost reduction of EUR 120 million as well as reduction of capital expenditure by about EUR 50 million compared to the earlier announced forecast.

Stora Enso launches profit protection programme to strengthen competitiveness
Stora Enso’s CEO Karl-Henrik Sundström.

The programme includes plans to reduce costs at the Ala and Imavere sawmills and a plan to close paper machine 6 at Imatra Mills. The Group estimates that some effects will be visible already during 2019 with full impact by the end of 2020.

“We have prepared already for a year for the possibility that the markets would become weaker. Under the current geopolitical circumstances, there is a notable risk that global trade could shrink materially. Due to market risk and increasing costs, we are now taking proactive action and are implementing our profit protection programme. We do this to further strengthen our competitiveness,” says Stora Enso’s CEO Karl-Henrik Sundström.

Planned actions in Imatra, Ala and Imavere

As part of the programme, Stora Enso is planning to close paper machine 6 at Imatra Mills in Finland and to start co-determination negotiations at the mill related to this plan. With annual production capacity of 90000 tonnes, PM6 is a small machine that has reached its end-of-life. The planned closure would result in a reduction of maximum 80 FTEs (full-time equivalents) and reorganisation of some tasks. The plan is to continue production until the maintenance break during Q3 or until the end of 2019, with an ability to deliver the committed volumes. The planned closure would cost approximately EUR 4 million related to asset write-off and costs of the co-determination process. The amount would be recorded as an item affecting comparability (IAC).

Stora Enso is also planning to take performance improvement measures at the Ala sawmill in Sweden and the Imavere sawmill in Estonia. The plan includes actions to increase productivity and reduce costs. The planned actions would result in a reduction of maximum 35 FTEs and required co-determination negotiations related to this plan have been initiated.

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