IFPTA News and Events

Metsä Group's Kemi Bioproduct Mill Ensures Efficient Logistics

Feb. 26, 2024 - In response to the needs of Metsä Group's new bioproduct mill in Kemi, an efficient and reliable logistics solution has been developed, taking into account sustainability at every stage of operation and minimizing environmental impacts.

Pulp bales produced at the bioproduct mill are automatically loaded onto HCT (High Capacity Transport) trucks. These trucks, powered by biodiesel, transport the bales to a port warehouse located 15 kilometers away. The specially designed HCT truck can carry approximately 72 tons of pulp load at once, about 1.5 times more than a standard truck load. These solutions significantly reduce the carbon footprint of transportation.

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Red Sea Crisis Hits Swedish Exports of Forest Products

Feb. 7, 2024 - Sweden is one of the world’s largest producers of pulp, paper and sawn wood products. Eighty per cent of Swedish forest industry products are sold to other countries. This means that the sector provides climate benefits all over the world, but that it is also dependent on resilient logistics.

“We calculate that our industry is the single largest transport buyer of container freight from Sweden via the Suez Canal, where costs have now unexpectedly jumped by 100 to 200 per cent, so we view the future with some concern. There is a risk of container shortages, delays and disruption. Going around the Cape of Good Hope instead of via the [Suez] Canal can take up to 30 extra days for a round trip,” says Christian Nielsen, Market Expert Wood Products at Swedish Forest Industries.

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Europe's Road Freight Spot Rates Drop Below Contract Rates

Feb. 6, 2024 - European road freight spot rates have fallen below contract rates for the first time in seven years.

A recent update from the IRU, Transport Intelligence (Ti) and Upply explained that falling spot rates have been driven by declining industrial demand, while contract rate rises have been prompted by new emission tolls and general cost growth.

The update said: “Contract prices are climbing above spot rates from Germany to Paris, Birmingham, Milan, Lille, Madrid, Rotterdam and Antwerp.”

Thomas Larrieu, CEO at digital freight solutions platform Upply, said: “At the start of 2024, shippers now have access to spot rates that are lower than contractual rates.

Read more at The Loadstar

Wisconsin Paper Group Marks 90 Years of Shipping Excellence

Jan. 29, 2024 - A Fox Valley-based shipper’s association has been helping its members realize a competitive advantage for 90 years and counting. In 1934, a group of 13 enterprising paper mill executives started the Wisconsin Paper Group to provide their paper companies with the best possible shipping services. Wisconsin Paper Group was the first not-for-profit shipping cooperative in the nation and remains the only shipper’s association of its kind nine decades later.

The Wisconsin Paper Group, also known as The WPG Shippers Association, acts as an extension of their members’ logistics teams. Members tender orders for less-than-truckload and shared truckload shipments to WPG for consolidation into multi-stop or single-stop truckload deliveries.

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The Impact of the Suez Canal Disruption on Pulp Prices and Shipments

Jan. 24, 2024 - By the end of December, major freight companies like MSC, the largest container shipping line globally, made an important decision. They announced their intention to avoid the Suez Canal due to the increasing attacks on commercial vessels in the Red Sea by Houthi militants in Yemen.

These assaults, occurring on a crucial East-West trade route, have prompted a significant change in shipping routes. Instead of taking the shorter route through the Suez Canal, over 100 container ships have rerouted around southern Africa. This diversion adds approximately 6,000 nautical miles to the typical journey from Asia to Europe, resulting in potential delivery delays of three to four weeks.

Read more at ResourceWise


Georgia Ports Authority provides Update on Blue Ridge Connector Project

January 23, 2024 (Press Release) - Georgia Ports continues its focus on infrastructure and engineering projects in 2024 to create business opportunities for customers, business partners, communities and rural Georgians.

The Blue Ridge Connector is a catalyst for enabling businesses to succeed through a competitive supply chain in a growing Northeast Georgia regional market. Opening in 2026, the Blue Ridge Connector will serve as an important connection for this growing distribution area.

Port officials offered an update recently to representatives from surrounding counties and customers about the arrival of this new infrastructure for future growth.

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Red Sea Crisis Changes Container Shipping Situation from Glut to Tightness

Jan. 15, 2024 - The closure of the Suez route has changed the fundamental outlook for container shipping in 2024, with a potential capacity crunch in Asia looming in the short term, according to the January report of the Baltic Exchange.

In the report, Vespucci Maritime CEO Lars Jensen wrote that up until mid-December 2023, the baseline outlook for 2024 was for a continued cyclical downturn likely with freight rates bottoming out in late 1Q or early 2Q 2024.

“After this, it was anticipated that carriers would begin to idle more capacity to stabilise and strengthen rates from what had already become loss-making levels. The de-facto closure of the Suez routing has changed this baseline outlook fundamentally.”

Read more at Container News


Resourcewise's 2024 Forest Products Industry Predictions

Jan. 12, 2024 - In 2023, the pulp, paper, and forest industries navigated through a series of dynamic market shifts and unanticipated challenges. From fluctuations in demand and prices to a growing focus on biofuel possibilities, the sector experienced noteworthy transformations.

1. The inventory destocking that occurred in virtually every industry in 2023 is coming to an end. This brings positive implications for the global pulp and paper industry and solid wood and lumber markets. Inventory destocking was one of the more important factors that contributed to the 2023 economy. With the end of destocking and indications of the Federal Reserve’s interest rate hikes ending, confidence in the economy has been embedded. This sets the stage for a resurgence in economic activity within the industrial sector, which is expected to occur in the first quarter of 2024.

Read more at ResourceWise


Editorial: SC Port Expansion is Needed, but Keep North Charleston’s Needs in Mind

Jan. 11, 2024 - South Carolina’s ports lost a decade’s worth of momentum in their unsuccessful attempt to expand container terminal operations onto the southern end of Daniel Island two decades ago.

The Global Gateway project consumed several years of planning and efforts that turned out to be in vain, as opposition to the expansion ultimately scuttled it and led the port instead to expand its operations on the southern end of the former Charleston Naval Base, an expansion now known as the Hugh Leatherman Terminal.

That’s why we support Gov. Henry McMaster’s request that lawmakers provide $55 million to purchase a now-shuttered WestRock paper mill on the Cooper River, just next door to the North Charleston terminal. It’s not every day the state has a chance to buy from a willing seller a significant chunk of industrial waterfront property near its major port operation; those chances should be seized when they appear. It certainly will put the port in a better position to expand in the long run.

Read more at The Post and Courier


West Coast Shipping Rates Surge as Red Sea Fallout Goes Global

Jan. 4, 2024 (Freight Waves) - As Red Sea disruptions intensify, container shipping spot rates are rising on the other side of the globe: for cargo shipped from Asia to the U.S. West Coast.

The Red Sea crisis coincides with drought restrictions in the Panama Canal. Asian cargo bound for East and Gulf Coast ports had previously been switched from Panama to the Suez Canal, and is now being rerouted on even longer voyages around the Cape of Good Hope.

The much shorter route from Asia to the West Coast is looking increasingly attractive.

At 14 knots, a direct voyage from Shanghai to New York via the Cape of Good Hope takes 43 days, according to Sea-Distances.org. A direct voyage from Shanghai to Los Angeles takes only...

Read more at Freight Waves


SSA Jacksonville Container Terminal Expansion Project Reaches Halfway Mark

Dec. 22, 2023 - SSA Marine has reached the halfway point in a $72 million project to expand and modernize the SSA Jacksonville Container Terminal. Located at JAXPORT’s Blount Island Marine Terminal, the SSA Jacksonville Container Terminal project is a public-private partnership between the port and SSA Marine.

The phased construction project began in 2022, with the company recently completing four of the project’s eight phases, including installing upgraded terminal lighting and a redesigned terminal gate system, as well as paving nearly 40 acres with heavy-duty asphalt. Six new outbound truck lanes are also currently under construction and scheduled to open in February 2024, with improvements to the terminal’s six inbound lanes scheduled for completion in late 2024.

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Holmen Paper: Logistics with Sustainability in Focus

Dec. 20, 2023 - The planning of our logistics has its starting point in our strategy. It's all about working long-term with sales plans and forecasts to secure capacity in our production as well as in the logistics channels. We usually talk about Supply & Demand Planning - balancing the market demand and our production capacity.

In many aspects it refers to a "backwards planning" - to "do the math" from when the customer wants the delivery and going all the way back to our own operations. If we do this the proper way, we have the best chance to deliver the right volumes to the customer, when they want it and in a cost-effective and sustainable way.

Read more at Holmen Paper


CN to Acquire Iowa Northern Railway

Dec. 6, 2023 - Canadian National Railway Company (CN) announced that it has signed and closed an agreement to acquire Iowa Northern Railway (IANR), which operates approximately 275 track miles in Iowa connecting to CN’s U.S. rail network.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The transaction closed into an independent voting trust pending regulatory review of the transaction by the U.S. Surface Transportation Board (STB).

IANR serves upper Midwest agricultural and industrial markets covering many goods, including biofuels and grain. This transaction represents a meaningful opportunity to support the growth of local business by creating single-line service to North American destinations, while preserving access to existing carrier options.

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All Berths Open for Business at Port of Savannah; Dock Renovations, Crane Commissioning Complete

Nov. 17, 2023 - The Port of Savannah’s Garden City Terminal handled 129 container ship calls last month, an increase of 26 percent compared to October 2022.

“For the first time in two and a half years, all berths are open at Garden City Terminal for faster, more efficient cargo handling,” said Georgia Ports Authority President and CEO Griff Lynch. “We appreciate our customers’ patience during the renovation of Berth 1, and look forward to providing the world-class vessel service they have come to expect from GPA.”

The Port of Savannah handled 449,000 twenty-foot equivalent container units in October, for its fourth-busiest October ever and a 5 percent increase over the same month in 2019, the most recent year not affected by the pandemic.

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Autonomous Trucks Cutting a Path in Forestry Sector

By James Menzies, Editor of Today's Trucking

Nov. 14, 2023 - In an untamed Quebec forest, a Canada lynx watches curiously from the bush as a platoon of Mack Granite logging trucks, one of them operated autonomously, passes by on a remote logging road. Meanwhile in Maryland, engineers from Robotic Research Autonomous Industries (RRAI) watch the lynx on screens set up to monitor the performance of the autonomous truck platoons serving a Resolute Forest Products facility.

This is the rugged Canadian wilderness, where forestry trucks encounter some of the toughest conditions imaginable. And this, according to Robotic Research, is the perfect environment for the near-term automation of commercial trucking.

Gabe Sganga is head of commercial growth for RRAI. The company got its start in automation more than 20 years ago, before anyone in the commercial trucking sector was even thinking about automating heavy trucks. Robotic’s origins involved working with the U.S. Department of Defense to develop automated military vehicles. In recent years, the company realized its AutoDrive self-driving platform had commercial potential as well.

Read more at TruckNews.com


UPM Pulp’s Regular Customer Surveys Provide Valuable Input for Development of Services

Nov. 9, 2023 - Through customer surveys, UPM Pulp is able to deepen its knowledge of customer attitudes, thoughts and perceptions. Surveys have provided valuable insights to help further improve the company’s standards of excellence and offer a tool for continuous development that brings an external customer dimension to performance management.

UPM Pulp conducts a survey twice a year to measure customer satisfaction. The survey has been carried out in its current form for three years and this is sent out to around 500 customer contacts. According to Miikka Kangas, Senior Manager Commercial Development, Pulp Sales at UPM Pulp, the aim has been to keep the survey light and simple, with only two main questions.

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Prince Rupert Port Authority to Begin Construction On $750 Million Export Logistics Project

Oct. 23, 2023 - The Prince Rupert Port Authority (PRPA) is commencing construction on the Ridley Island Export Logistics Project (RIELP), an innovative large-scale logistics project that will provide expanded capacity and capabilities for rail-to-container transloading of multiple export products at the Port of Prince Rupert.

The investment promises to deliver critical trade infrastructure that will improve supply chain resiliency, strategic market access and enhanced competitiveness for Canadian exports.

The project will consist of a 108-acre greenfield development on Ridley Island that will commence operation in Q3 2026.

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Paper Excellence Canada Restarts Pulp Operations at Catalyst Crofton Mill

Sept. 27, 2023 - Paper Excellence Canada announced the resumption of kraft pulp operations at its Catalyst Crofton mill, bringing more than 300 workers back to their jobs.

"While market conditions allow for the restart of our pulp operations, the curtailment of paper operations at Crofton is being extended to the end of October," the company said in a press release.

Krista Cuddy, Catalyst Crofton, Interim Director - Operations & Integration, explained, "In spite of challenges posed by exceptionally low pulp and paper prices driven by global market fluctuations, we are pleased to announce that we are resuming pulp production and reinstating a portion of our workforce at our Crofton mill.

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Klabin Holds Inauguration Ceremony for Puma II in Paraná, Brazil

Sept. 26, 2023 - Klabin on Sept. 21 held an inauguration ceremony for its Puma II -- a project that marked the expansion of the Puma Unit in Ortigueira, Paraná, Brazil.

According to Klabin, the Puma II project is the largest investment in the company's history and the largest private investment ever made in the State of Paraná. With an investment of R$12.9 billion, Klabin installed two new paper machines -- MP27 and MP28 – which are both in operation and have a combined production capacity of 910 thousand tons per year of packaging paper grades.

Together, the two machines increase Klabin's annual production capacity to 4.7 million tons of paper and cellulose.

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West Fraser to Sell Two Pulp Mills in Western Canada to Atlas Holdings for $120 Million

Sept. 22, 2023 - West Fraser Timber Co. Ltd. and Atlas Holdings today announced the signing of a definitive agreement for the sale of West Fraser's Quesnel River Pulp mill in Quesnel, British Columbia and its Slave Lake Pulp mill in Slave Lake, Alberta to Atlas. Atlas owns and operates several pulp, paper and wood products businesses in Canada and the United States.

The agreement announced today includes related woodlands operations and timber holdings in Alberta and a long-term fibre supply agreement for the Quesnel River Pulp facility.

Upon closing of the transaction, the Quesnel River and Slave Lake pulp mills will be operated by Millar Western Forest Products, which joined the global Atlas family of manufacturing and distribution businesses in 2017.

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Resolute Invests in Innovative Truck Platooning Technology

Sept. 13, 2023 (From Resolute’s blog) - Resolute Forest Products is helping advance an exciting off-highway automated vehicle (AV) technology known as truck platooning. Truck platooning involves a convoy of trucks that are linked together electronically, all operated by an experienced driver in the lead truck. The rest of the trucks in the convoy respond to the lead driver’s movements through a drive-by-wire and autonomy system.

The project is spearheaded by FPInnovations, a private not-for-profit R&D organization that specializes in developing solutions to make the Canadian forest products sector more competitive.

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G2 Ocean Adds Two More Ammonia-Ready Vessels to Its Fleet

Sept. 11, 2023 - G2 Ocean has achieved another milestone in its sustainable growth strategy with an additional two ammonia-ready vessels being delivered to its pool in 2026 by its shareholder, the Grieg Maritime Group (Grieg).

Following its commitment to only purchase newbuilt vessels with zero-emission technology, Grieg signed a contract in May 2023 with the shipyard CSSC Huangpu Wenchong Longxue which included two firm plus two optional 82,300 deadweight tonne (dwt) ammonia-ready open hatch vessels.

Last week, Grieg exercised its option for the two additional vessels. All four vessels will be delivered to G2 Ocean’s pool in 2026.

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Alexander Global Logistics Opens New Country Office in United Arab Emirates

Sept. 9, 2023 - Alexander Global Logistics (AGL) in August opened a new country office in Dubai South, United Arab Emirates.

The establishment of the new country office coincides with a 10-year Strategic Partnership Agreement signed by AGL and AD Ports Group in May of 2022. According to the agreement, the two parties would collaborate to form and launch a transshipment hub in Abu Dhabi dedicated to handling pulp and paper products.

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Georgia Ports Authority, CSX Offer New ‘Carolina Connector’ Service

Sept. 7, 2023 – North Carolina importers and exporters can now tap into a faster supply chain through a direct rail connection between the Port of Savannah and Rocky Mount, North Carolina via the CSX Carolina Connector (CCX) Intermodal terminal.

“This is an exciting logistics solution for existing and new customers across North Carolina,” said Georgia Ports Authority President and CEO Griff Lynch. “In collaboration with CSX, we’re offering daily access and faster service, bringing world-class port services to the doorstep of the area’s business and industry.”

The Georgia Ports Authority and CSX have teamed to provide 7-day-a-week rail departures between GPA’s Mason Mega Rail Terminal in Savannah and the Eastern North Carolina location, offering customers three-day ship-to-shore transit time.

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Metsä Group Says Logistics Solution is Ready for New Kemi Bioproduct Mill

Sept. 6, 2023 - The new logistics solution designed for Metsä Group's bioproduct mill in Kemi is ready to serve the mill’s transport needs. The solution includes a new logistics road on Sahansaarenkatu leading to the mill site, an electrified private track to the mill and the warehouse in port of Kemi in Ajos.

Two thirds of the new mill’s wood will be transported by rail, using the new private track. The transports are powered by VR’s latest engines. Vectron electric locomotives can handle loads as heavy as 2,500 tonnes, which means approximately 20–25 per cent more wood per train. All in all, more than 400 wagons will be used for the Kemi bioproduct mill’s rail transports, and the fleet is assigned exclusively to these transports.

Traffic infrastructure and related improvements have been addressed from the project’s outset, and they have been designed jointly with the Finnish Transport Infrastructure Agency and VR. The mill’s private track enables wood transports with electric locomotives all the way to the mill.

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As Deepsea Rates Dive, Carriers Hunt for Intra-Europe Shortsea Returns

Sept. 5, 2023 - With the major deepsea trades in the doldrums, container lines are looking more closely at niche shortsea markets to support their growth aspirations.

European shortsea services, such as Ellerman City Liners’ North Europe to Iberia routes and WEC Lines’ new Euro-Maroc service, which launches this month, are not only confirmation of demand, but also that sustainable freight rates can be achieved on intra-Europe routes.

And as ocean carriers idle their huge newbuild deliveries, due to poor demand prospects on the Asia-Europe and transpacific trades, many secondary and small routes continue to thrive, creating demand for smaller tonnage.

Moreover, feeder operators, no longer hobbled by owners’ demands for lengthy time-charter periods and sky-high daily hire rates, are now

Read more at The Loadstar


Port of Kemi Expansion Project Enters Finishing and Testing Phases

Aug. 30, 2023 - Started in the spring 2021, the biggest expansion in the history of the Port of Kemi in Finland has moved ahead to finishing and testing phases.

According to the Port, expansion work has advanced as planned and finishing work as well as testing is now underway in the expansion area.

“At the moment, an inspection of the safe clearance depth is ongoing in the dock area according to the specifications of the Finnis Transport and Communications Agency Traficom.” said Jari Heikkilä, Technical Manager at Port of Kemi. “The inspection will be finished by the end of August, after which Traficom will give the green light for the new waterway.

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Port of Jacksonville Closed Wednesday, Aug. 30 Due to Hurricane Idalia

August 30, 2023 (7 a.m.) - The U.S. Coast Guard Captain of the Port for Sector Jacksonville set Hurricane Port Condition ZULU for the Port of Jacksonville effective 8 p.m. yesterday, Tuesday, August 29. JAXPORT is closed through today, Wednesday, August 30.

The port anticipates reopening tomorrow, Thursday, August 31, pending storm impacts and once federal reopening safety protocols are completed.


Port of Savannah Receives Four New Electric Ship-to-Shore Cranes

Aug. 25, 2023 - The Port of Savannah received four Super Post-Panamax ship-to-shore cranes Thursday, Aug. 24, upgrading the crane fleet to 34 machines at Garden City Terminal after four older cranes are retired and recycled.

“Along with the completion of our project to improve Berth 1, these cranes will help deliver faster turn times to our ocean carrier customers, including the largest vessels calling on the U.S. East Coast,” said Griff Lynch, Georgia Ports Authority president and CEO. “No other terminal in the nation can bring more cranes to bear, or match the efficiency, productivity and global connectivity of the Port of Savannah.”

Designed by Konecranes of Finland, the all-electric cranes arrived on the vessel BigLift Barentsz.

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European Softwood Lumber Exports to the US Cooled in Second Quarter of 2023

Aug. 24, 2023 (Fastmarkets) - After a scorching start to the year, US softwood lumber imports from Europe cooled abruptly in the second quarter. That trend contributed to an overall fade in US demand for foreign lumber through the first half.

Imports from the 10 largest European suppliers fell to 428 million board feet (mmbf) in the second quarter, down 30% from the record-setting first-quarter volume of 610 mmbf and lagging the year-ago total by 12%. European shipments to the US declined to the lowest quarterly total since the last three months of 2021.

US imports from Europe through the first half reached 1.04 billion board feet (bbf), up 12% compared to the year-ago pace through June. Shipments jumped 38% in the first quarter compared to the 2022 pace through March after reaching all-time highs last year.

Read more at Fastmarkets


Exports of Pulp from Brazil Climb to USD 4.1 Billion in First Half 2023; China, North America, Main Destinations

Aug. 22, 2023 - The Brazilian Tree Industry (Ibá) reported that for the first half of 2023, pulp exports from Brazil increased by 8.2%, totaling USD 4.1 billion, driven by sales to China and North America. The balance generated by pulp exports to China increased by 25.4% and to North America by 19.9% in the first half of 2023.

The value of paper exports to North America also increased by 20.8%, reaching R$ 130.8 million between January and June.

In the first half of 2023, the increase in pulp exports to China positioned the country as the main destination for exports of pulp produced in Brazil, reaching USD 1.8 billion traded in the first six months of 2023, followed by Europe with USD 1 billion.

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WestRock Announces Plans to Close Pulp and Paper Mill in Tacoma, Washington

Aug. 1, 2023 - WestRock today announced it will permanently cease operating its paper mill in Tacoma, Washington, and will conclude production by September 30, 2023.

WestRock is committed to improving its return on invested capital as well as maximizing the performance of its assets. The combination of high operating costs and the need for significant capital investment were the determining factors in the decision to cease operations at the mill.

"WestRock is working to optimize our operational footprint and consolidate production in order to improve our return on invested capital, and we have made the difficult decision to close the Tacoma mill as part of this effort," said David B. Sewell, chief executive officer at WestRock. "One of the most critical factors...

Read more at PaperAge


Thunder Bay Pulp and Paper Acquires Thunder Bay Mill from Resolute

Aug. 1, 2023 - Atlas Holdings today announced the closing of the previously announced acquisition of the pulp, newsprint and directory paper mill operations in Thunder Bay, Ontario, from Resolute FP Canada Inc. by Atlas' affiliate, Thunder Bay Pulp and Paper Inc.

Thunder Bay is a leading northern bleached softwood kraft and northern bleached hardwood kraft pulp, paper, newsprint and directory producer. The mill has been a landmark in northwestern Ontario for more than a century.

Kent Ramsay, who has served as General Manager of the Mill since 2019, has been named President of Thunder Bay Pulp and Paper.

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Canfor Pulp Reports Results for Second Quarter of 2023

July 28, 2023 - Canfor Pulp Products Inc. (CPPI) today reported its second quarter of 2023 results.

"Financially, this was a challenging quarter for the pulp business as declining global pulp market conditions weighed heavily on results. While we continue to navigate the current external challenges facing our pulp business, including the ongoing weak global pulp market fundamentals, we greatly appreciate our employees' continued efforts in navigating through these difficult conditions."

Global softwood pulp market fundamentals and pricing experienced considerable pressure during the second quarter of 2023 as tepid global demand was combined with rising global softwood pulp producer inventory levels. As a result, NBSK US-dollar list prices to China dropped sharply throughout the quarter to end June at a low of US$648 per tonne.

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First Shipment of Pulp from UPM Paso de los Toros Mill Arrives in Qingdao, China

July 17, 2023 - The M/V Saga Faith, carrying about 50,000 tonnes of UPM Euca, departed end May from UPM’s new deep sea pulp terminal in Montevideo, Uruguay, and arrived in the Xilian port of Qingdao, China, on 14th July. The shipment marks the inaugural delivery from the UPM Paso de los Toros pulp mill – the company’s largest ever investment – which commenced operations in April of this year.

Some of our key pulp customers in China together with our Pulp APAC team members celebrated this important milestone together. In collaboration with Saga Welco's team, the UPM Pulp team organised an informative vessel tour providing our customers with valuable insights into UPM's efficient, reliable and sustainable logistic network. In addition, they witnessed the unloading of the first batch of pulp from the UPM Paso de los Toros mill in central Uruguay.

Read more at UPM Pulp


The B.C. Port Strike Is Over, But Economic Impact Could Last Weeks

July 15, 2023 (CBC News) - The British Columbia port strike might be over, but it's expected to take weeks — even months — for supply chains and affected businesses to recover, according to experts.

The Railway Association of Canada estimates it could take three to five days for supply chains to recover for each single day the port was shuttered. Following a 13-day shutdown, that's at least 5½ weeks.

Some industry experts say it could take even longer.

The International Longshore and Warehouse Union Canada (ILWU) and the B.C. Maritime Employers Association agreed to a tentative four-year deal on Thursday morning to end the shutdown, and about 7,400 workers are expected to be back at work today. The details of that agreement haven't been made public yet.

Read more at CBC Canada


Canfor Pulp Temporarily Curtailing Northwood Pulp Mill Due to Ongoing Labour Dispute at B.C. Ports

July 12, 2023 - Canfor Pulp Products Inc. is announcing the curtailment of its Northwood Pulp Mill in Prince George, British Columbia, Canada, effective July 13, 2023.

The curtailment is due to limited storage space for pulp products that cannot be transported overseas as a result of the ongoing labour dispute at B.C. ports.

The downtime is expected to remain in place for the duration of the labour dispute and will remove approximately 11,000 tonnes of market kraft pulp per week.

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US ILWU Rejects Diverted Vessels Amid Canada Strikes

July 11, 2023 - International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) US West Coast President, Willie Adams, told CNBC in a statement: “The ILWU will not be unloading Canadian bound cargo in solidarity with out Brothers and Sisters in ILWU Canada.”

With 16 vessels currently anchored off the Port of Vancouver and another six vessels at Prince Rupert, CNBC has reported that another 15 containerships are bound for Vancouver and nine for Prince Rupert, ships of which the ILWU would avoid, should they be rerouted.

Two of the vessels to be diverted were the MSC Sara Elena and the OOCL San Francisco, while the MSC Matilde V recently departed back to Qingdao after holding cargo intended for Vancouver, reported CNBC.

Read more at Port Technology


Mondi to Acquire Hinton Pulp Mill from West Fraser for USD 5 Million

July 10, 2023 - Mondi has agreed to acquire the 250,000 tonne per year Hinton Pulp mill in Alberta, Canada, from West Fraser Timber Co. Ltd (West Fraser) for a total consideration of USD 5 million.

As part of the transaction, Mondi will enter into a long-term partnership with West Fraser to access local, high-quality fibre from a well-established wood basket.

The intention, subject to pre-engineering and permitting, is to invest EUR 400 million in the expansion of Hinton, primarily for a new 200,000 tonne per year kraft paper machine, anticipated to be operational from the second half of 2027.

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UPM Permanently Cuts 485,000 Tonnes of Graphic Paper Capacity in Europe

June 28, 2023 - UPM has decided to close 485,000 tonnes of graphic paper capacity in Europe. The company permanently closes paper machine 6 at UPM Schongau, Germany, and paper machine 4 at UPM Steyrermühl, Austria. The decision is based on the plans announced in June 2022 and in March 2023.

The employee consultation process in Schongau was conducted in line with local legislations and has now been finalized. The number of persons affected is 136 for the site. The uncoated publication paper machine 6 will be permanently closed today.

UPM Schongau continues graphic paper production on the remaining cost-competitive machines.

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US West Coast Port Deal Eases Strike Tensions as SCFI and FBX Indices Follow WCI

June 19, 2023 - The closure of the past week saw two strings of activities on either side of the globe. The US West Coast Port union strike looms were dissipated to a great extent following intervention from the US authorities, despite hold-up of cargo worth US$5.2 billion and trucks in piles at ports.

Ports, such as Seattle, displayed 10-day congestion at the port even as ports, such as Los Angeles and Long Beach, saw some ease-off. On the other end, in China, the People's Bank of China reduced the rate on one-year medium-term lending facility (MLF) loans, totalling 237 billion Chinese yuan (US$33 billion), by 10 basis points.

The rate cut, its first in 10 months was done on the expectations to re-induce some demand in the economy and ease factory deflation to an extent. Whether the extent of these played into rates and the global freight market and how they will play remains to be seen.

Read more at Container News


Cargo Loaders at B.C.'s Ports Vote Overwhelmingly in Favour of Strike

June 12, 2023 (CBC) - More than 7,000 terminal cargo loaders at British Columbia's ports have voted overwhelmingly in support of strike action against local maritime employers, although both sides are still negotiating to avoid such an outcome.

The International Longshore and Warehouse Union Canada says a vote over the weekend yielded 99.24 per cent support for strike action against the B.C. Maritime Employers Association "if necessary.''

The strike vote gives cargo movers additional leverage in talks with employers, allowing the union to file 72-hour notice for a strike that could begin on June 24 if negotiations do not progress.

The Greater Vancouver Board of Trade issued a statement saying a strike could have serious implications for both the B.C. and Canadian economies, given that supply chains have already suffered major blows from the COVID-19 pandemic and recent climate-related disasters, including catastrophic flooding in 2021.

Read more at CBC News


SCA’s New RoRo Schedule Optimizes Routes

June 5, 2023 - SCA's multibillion-dollar investment in the world's largest kraftliner machine in Obbola means greatly increased production volumes of fossil-free produced kraftliner. SCA Logistics is therefore renewing the RoRo schedule and at the same time opening up new transport possibilities starting in 2023.

Above all, the new schedule means that one more trip will call at Umeå. The main background to the change is SCA's expansion of kraftliner manufacturing in Obbola. The decision rests on the increasingly strong demand for renewable packaging in Europe, a need that continues to grow in line with increased e-commerce, growing population and the ambition to reduce plastic use.

“Our previous schedule had a structure based on 2016 volumes. We have of course made adjustments over the years, but now we have really optimized the system based on the volumes we have today and the development we see going forward,” says Andreas Disby, Forwarding Manager, Vessel Operations at SCA Logistics.

Read more at SCA


First Shipment of Pulp from UPM Paso de los Toros Mill Sailed from Montevideo

May 30, 2023 - UPM and Saga Welco AS announce that the loading of the first shipment of pulp from the state-of-the-art UPM Paso de los Toros pulp mill has been successfully completed at UPM’s new deep sea pulp terminal in Montevideo.

The M/V Saga Faith sailed on Friday, 26 May, carrying a full ship load of about 50,000 tonnes of UPM Euca pulp to Asia, where the vessel is expected to arrive around mid July.

UPM’s pulp terminal in the port of Montevideo started operations in October 2022. The highly specialised, fit-for-purpose pulp terminal operates 24/7 with an annual operating capacity of over 2 million tonnes of pulp and 80 ships per year.

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Norske Skog Bruck Begins Commercial Deliveries of Recycled Containerboard

May 16, 2023 - Norske Skog Bruck announces successful commercial orders of the containerboard grades Testliner 3 and Fluting. This represents the introduction of 210,000 tonnes of competitive containerboard capacity to meet the growing demand for renewable and re-usable packaging. The production is based 100% on recycled fibre and will use steam from the waste-to-energy plant, which opened in April 2022.

In early April, Norske Skog started production of recycled containerboard at its Bruck mill in Styria, Austria. Bruck mill's PM3 was converted from the production of newsprint to testliner and fluting, and has the capacity to produce 210,000 tonnes per year.

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APM Terminals Pledges EUR 962 Million Investment in Brazilian Terminals by 2026

May 12, 2023 - As part of a Dutch trade delegation to Brazil this week, APM Terminals’ CEO Keith Svendsen pledged a EUR 962 million (R$ 5.2 billion) investment in its Brazilian operations up to 2026.

This figure includes a EUR 296 million (R$ 1.6 billion) of a total EUR 483 (R$ 2.6 billion) investment exclusively for the Phase One development of a new terminal in Suape. The terminal, located in Estaleiro Atlântico Sul, is in the final stages of acquisition and will rejuvenate infrastructure and increase competition in the port.

APM Terminals has committed an additional EUR 666 (R$ 3.6 billion) of investment to the company’s four other terminals and inland depots, by 2026. A large share of this, around EUR285 million, is allocated to Brasil Terminal Portuário, Santos.

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Georgia Ports Authority Wins Environmental Approval for Gainesville Rail Hub

May 11, 2023 - Georgia Ports Authority Executive Director Griff Lynch said GPA’s Network Georgia plan to develop rail hubs around the state is gaining momentum, with federal environmental approval for an inland terminal near Gainesville, Georgia.

GPA recently received NEPA (National Environmental Policy Act) approval for the Northeast Georgia Inland Port in the Gainesville-Hall County area. The Authority will now finalize a grant agreement with the U.S. Department of Transportation Maritime Administration, and then move on to construction. MARAD has awarded GPA a grant of up to $46.8 million to build a new inland container port along the I-85/I-985 corridor. Earthwork is slated to begin in July, with terminal construction scheduled to begin January 2024 and wrap up by July 2026.

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WestRock to Close Paper Mill in North Charleston, South Carolina

May 2, 2023 - WestRock today announced it will permanently cease operating its paper mill in North Charleston, South Carolina, on August 31, 2023.

"WestRock and its predecessor companies have had a long history in the region operating the North Charleston mill, and the contributions of the team members over the years have been greatly appreciated," said David B. Sewell, CEO at WestRock. "The decision to close a facility and impact the lives of our team members is never easy, and we are committed to assisting our North Charleston team with exploring roles at other WestRock locations and outplacement assistance."

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Total U.S. Containerboard Production Decreased 10 Percent in Q1 2023

April 28, 2023 - The American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) released its Q1 2023 Containerboard Quarterly report. According to the report, total Containerboard production in the first quarter of 2023 decreased 10% when compared to Q1 2022.

All containerboard grades experienced operating rate increases relative to Q4 2022.

Liner grades had a combined quarterly operating rate of 83.5%, up from 78.7%, while Medium grades were at 90.9%, up from 86.1%.

Export production in Q1 was 22.9% higher than the previous quarter, but trailed Q1 2022 production by 23.5%.

Mill inventories dropped below 400,000 short tons for the first time since September 2021.


Metsä Group and Royal Wagenborg Collaborate to Reduce Carbon Dioxide Emissions

April 24, 2023 - Metsä Group and the Dutch shipping company Royal Wagenborg have agreed to cooperate to reduce the climate impact of sea transport. The goal is to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from sea transport of Metsä Group products by 30 percent (per ton/mile) by 2030 compared to the 2021 level.

“The majority of our products are delivered to our customers by sea, and Royal Wagenborg is an important partner for us. Shipping as a whole represents about three percent of the world's greenhouse gas emissions, and it is important to achieve emission reductions," said Jari Voutilainen, Director of Procurement and Logistics at Metsä Group.

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VR’s First Electrically Driven Train Transporting Roundwood Arrives at Metsä Group’s Kemi Bioproduct Mill

April 21, 2023 - VR’s first train with electric locomotive transporting roundwood arrived for test runs at Metsä Group’s Kemi bioproduct mill. This marked a major step in Metsä Group and VR’s long-term cooperation, ensuring the Kemi bioproduct mill’s wood supply by rail.

At the Kemi bioproduct mill, rail transports will account for approximately two thirds of the roundwood consumed. This translates to roughly 5 million cubic metres per year, or around 8–10 trains per day. Large volumes of wood can be transported in an efficient and environmentally friendly way, with wood loading, rail transports and unloading designed to work smoothly.

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The Northwest Seaport Alliance Launches Rail Cargo Incentive Program in Pacific Northwest

April 7, 2023 - The Northwest Seaport Alliance (NWSA) has announced the launch of its 2023 Rail Cargo Incentive Program aimed at driving growth and cost-effective operations in the Pacific Northwest region. The program will increase cargo volumes in the gateway while reducing costs to importers and exporters that utilize the NWSA gateway and their rail partners.

Approximately half the import cargo that moves through the NWSA gateway is bound for destinations outside of the Puget Sound region, primarily the Midwest. The 2023 Rail Cargo Incentive Program will provide a $50 incentive per rail lift for eligible rail volumes moving through the gateway beginning on May 1, 2023.

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UPM's Pulp Mill in Paso de los Toros, Uruguay, Ready for Start-Up

April 3, 2023 - The new UPM Paso de los Toros pulp mill has reached the technical readiness to start operations. UPM has also received the environmental authorities' acceptance of all the procedures, systems and technologies that are required to fulfil the environmental permit of the mill. This approval precedes the final operating authorization, which is expected to be received in a few weeks. UPM will announce when the authorization is received, and operations can start.

The new pulp mill has an annual production capacity of 2.1 million tonnes of eucalyptus pulp.

First customer deliveries are expected to start within the first month following the start-up.

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Port of Savannah Adding 55 Hybrid Yard Cranes

March 30, 2023 – The Georgia Ports Authority has agreed to spend $170 million on 55 hybrid-engine rubber-tired gantry cranes to outfit the Port of Savannah’s Ocean Terminal, as it is redeveloped into an all-container facility.

The hybrid machines will exclusively operate off electric battery power, with diesel generators running only to recharge batteries. This will reduce fuel consumption by an estimated 47 percent compared to all-diesel machines. Per year, that is a reduction of 8,800 gallons of diesel per crane, or nearly 500,000 gallons annually across the Ocean Terminal fleet. This will result in a fuel purchase savings of more than $1.6 million per year at current rates.

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Lucart Invests in New Logistics Hub in Saint-Diè-des-Vosges, France

March 27, 2023 - As part of its planned investment plan in France, Lucart announces the acquisition of a logistics hub in the Hellieule business park in Saint-Dié-des-Vosges. The logistics hub will be fully operational during the first quarter of 2024 and improve the storage and shipping capabilities of products manufactured by Lucart’s tissue mill in Laval-sur-Vologne.

In 2022, the mill produced 65,000 tonnes of high-quality tissue paper.

The new logistics hub located in the Hellieule business park is a 22,000-square-metre building built on 10 hectares of land with a storage capacity of 20,000 pallet columns. The site was created to concentrate finished product stocks before they are shipped to customers in France, Germany, the Benelux and Northern Europe.

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Klabin Officially Inaugurates Port Terminal in Paranaguá

March 24, 2023– Klabin on March 22 made official the start of operations at the Klabin Port Terminal (PAR-01), located on the wharf commercial center at the Port of Paranaguá, in Paraná.

With the capacity to receive one million tons of pulp and paper per year, the Terminal is part of the investment package in logistics made by the company in Paraná in recent years. With the operation, the unloading of short and long fiber pulp, fluff pulp and paper, from the Puma Units, located in Ortigueira (PR), and from the Monte Alegre Unit, in Telêmaco Borba (PR), can be carried out within the Port of Paranaguá.

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Canadian Pacific and Kansas City Southern Combination Approved by U.S. Surface Transportation Board

March 20, 2023 - Canadian Pacific (“CP”) and Kansas City Southern ("KCS") on March 15 said the U.S. Surface Transportation Board issued a decision approving the CP and KCS joint merger application, subject to certain conditions, thereby authorizing the two railways to combine to form Canadian Pacific Kansas City ("CPKC"), the first single-line railway connecting the U.S., Mexico and Canada.

The decision authorizes CP to exercise control of KCS as early as April 14, 2023, at or after which point CP and KCS would combine to create the new CPKC. CP is reviewing the full 212-page decision in detail and in the coming days will announce its plans with respect to the creation of CPKC.

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DP World to Invest $35 Million to Boost Container Capacity in Brazil in 2023

March 15, 2023 - DP World announced plans to invest US$35 million in 2023 to expand and modernize its facilities located on the left bank of Brazil’s Port of Santos. The port is one of the largest and most modern private multi-purpose port terminals in the country.

With the investment, the company plans to increase annual movement capacity from 1.2 million TEUs (unit equivalent to a twenty-foot container) to 1.4 million TEUs and expand the size of the quay from 1,100 meters to 1,300 meters. The terminal currently inhabits 845,000 square meters, with an additional 130,000 square meters available for expansion.

The port is also home to extensive cellulose pulp operations.

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ContainerPort Group Further Develops Operations in Philadelphia

March 13, 2023 - In response to increased demand in Philadelphia, ContainerPort Group (CPG®), a nationwide trucking carrier specializing in drayage solutions, announced an expanded footprint in the market with additional freight capacity and increased driver support.

“As the cargo continues to flow through the east coast, our customers are turning to us for additional trucking capacity throughout the Northeast, and particularly in Philadelphia. We already have a presence across other ports including New York/New Jersey, Norfolk, Baltimore, and more, so broadening our footprint to include Philadelphia was a next logical step for our business and for our customers,” said Joey Palmer, President, CPG.

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Woodfiber Shortages Deepen in British Columbia While Pulp Operations Stall

March 10, 2023 (Fastmarkets) - Ongoing sawmill curtailments in British Columbia, combined with tightening access to timber, significantly tightened fiber markets through fourth quarter of 2022 and into the first quarter of 2023. Pulping operations are slowing operating rates, taking curtailments, or in one case closing permanently to compensate for the lack of wood.

“Inventories dropped quickly during the fourth quarter,” a wood buyer said. He added that there is further weakness in the logging and trucking force. “That’s a real fear.”

Most of British Columbia’s (BC) pulping capacity is dependent on sawmill residuals for furnish, so to backfill lost volume, mills are turning to more pulp logs and expensive whole-log chips. Some are buying low-grade sawlogs. But with the lack of sawlog demand, less pulp logs are being harvested as they are a come-along product.

“There are no incremental sawmill chips available,” a source said. “We’re chipping logs, which now provides 25% of our supply.”

Attributing government “issues,” such as the old-growth deferral and other set-asides, a contact said, “Everyone is running at 75% capacity or so and it will be like that at least through the year. The pulp mills in BC are down about 6 million m3/year of available supply.”

The complete article is available at Fastmarkets: Read more at Fastmarkets


Pactiv Evergreen to Close Canton, North Carolina, Pulp and Paper Mill

March 7, 2023 - Pactiv Evergreen on March 6 announced plans to take significant restructuring actions related to its Beverage Merchandising operations. The Company expects to close its Canton, North Carolina mill and its converting facility in Olmsted Falls, Ohio with operations at both facilities expected to end during the second quarter of 2023.

Pactiv Evergreen did not disclose the production capacity of the Canton mill, however Beth Kelly, Director, Communications said the mill has four paper machines.

Production from the Olmsted Falls facility will be reallocated to other sites, Pactiv Evergreen said.

The company also continues to explore strategic alternatives for its Pine Bluff, Arkansas, mill and Waynesville, North Carolina, facility. The Company has not set a timetable in relation to this process.

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Prince Rupert Port Authority Announces Milestone on Ridley Island Export Logistics Project

March 2, 2023 - The Prince Rupert Port Authority (PRPA) announced today that the Ridley Island Export Logistics Project (RIELP) has reached a significant milestone with the receipt of its final determination of the Federal environmental effects evaluation review.

The Federal Authorities have determined, in accordance with the requirements of Section 82 of the Impact Assessment Act (IAA), that the Ridley Island Export Logistics Project is not likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects. This concludes the Federal environmental review process, which is a prerequisite for the Federal Authorities to consider the required authorizations for the project to proceed.

Following receipt of required permits, early works are planned to begin in early March, with tree clearing and site preparation activities. 

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Bracell Adopts the Use of a 100% Electric Truck for Pulp Transport

Feb. 24, 2023 – Brazilian pulp producer Bracell has started the year with an innovative project -- the use of an electric truck to transport pulp.

According to Bracell, the initiative is unprecedented in this type of operation with heavy vehicles (trucks weighing more than 40 tons) and it is estimated that the company will avoid the emission of 132,000 kg of CO2eq per year from a single truck. In this way, the company reinforces its commitment to sustainable development in all its operations, processes and activities and expands its actions aimed at sustainability also to the logistical stage of the production chain, 

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Finnish Transport Workers’ Union Rejects Employer’s Proposal, Strikes Begin at Ports

Feb. 15, 2023 - Finnish Transport Workers’ Union, Auto-ja Kjetusala Työntekijäliitto (AKT), commenced its strike action on 15 February at 06:00 am (local time) impacting all ports and terminals in Finland.

AKT and employer organisations are at an impasse over wages and working conditions.

The strike that started earlier today will last until further notice with all vessel operations in Finland's ports, gate moves and handling of containers within terminals having been suspended until further notice.

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Spliethoff Takes Delivery of First of Two Spliethoff DP2 B-type Vessels

Feb. 7, 2023 - M.v. Brouwersgracht — the first of two Spliethoff DP2 B-type vessels — has been handed over from Fuzhou Mawei shipyard to Spliethoff Group on 1 February 2023. Sister vessel m.v. Bloemgracht will be delivered in about three months’ time.

The Spliethoff DP2 B-type vessels are the next generation offshore supply vessels with a number of versatile characteristics that makes them unique in the market.

These state-of-the-art vessels combine the intake of a multi-purpose vessel with a superior DP2 station keeping ability, making them ideal for supplying large volumes and weights of cargo directly offshore.

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Metsä Board Concludes Logistics Agreements for Kemi Board Mill in Finland

Feb. 2, 2023 - Metsä Board has concluded a logistics agreement with Kuljetusliike Kalevi Huhtala Oy for transport between the Kemi board mill and Ajos harbour, in Kemi. All exports from the Kemi board mill will be centralised in Ajos.

"Efficient export logistics is a key factor in paperboard production. We require efficient and low-emission solutions from our chosen partners in logistics," says Timo Ahonen, VP, Kemi Board mill.

The signed agreement is a continuation of an agreement signed earlier by Metsä Group for the transportation of products from the bioproduct mill under construction in Kemi, and has a part in ensuring efficient and environmentally friendly logistics solutions between Metsä Group's Kemi integrated mill and the Ajos harbour.

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MSC and Maersk to Discontinue 2M Alliance in 2025

Jan. 25, 2023 - MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) and Maersk A/S, an entity under A.P. Moller - Maersk, have mutually agreed to terminate, effective in January 2025, the present 2M alliance.

In a joint statement, CEO Vincent Clerc of A. P. Moller - Maersk, and CEO Soren Toft of MSC say: “MSC and Maersk recognize that much has changed since the two companies signed the 10-year agreement in 2015. Discontinuing the 2M alliance paves the way for both companies to continue to pursue their individual strategies.

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Georgia Ports Authority Names Flavio Batista as Vice President of Sales and Marketing

Jan. 23, 2023 - The Georgia Ports Authority has named Flavio Batista as its new Vice President of Sales and Marketing.

“We’re delighted to add Flavio to our team,” said Cliff Pyron, Chief Commercial Officer at GPA. “His depth of knowledge and the energy he brings to this new position will continue and strengthen the customer-centered focus that has been a hallmark of Georgia Ports.”

Batista comes to GPA from the Wallenius Wilhelmsen Group, an ocean carrier focused on developing sustainable shipping and logistics solutions for manufacturers of cars, trucks, heavy equipment and specialized cargo.

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Kruger Energy’s First Two All-Electric Class 8 Tractor-Trailers Now on the Road

Jan. 19, 2023 – Kruger Energy is proud to be one of the pioneers as its two 100% electric semi-trailer trucks have started to carry materials and Cashmere®, SpongeTowels® and Bonterra™ tissue products, between two Kruger Products facilities in Québec.

These are among the first all-electric class 8 vehicles operating in Canada, and the first in the Canadian tissue industry. The vehicles have been branded with visuals illustrating Kruger Energy’s activities related to the development and management of renewable energy power assets.

The two electric trucks will replace one standard diesel truck and will enable the Company to reduce its GHG emissions by 380 tons of CO2 per year.

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Spotlight: Domtar’s Supply Chain & Transportation Logistics

Jan. 18, 2023 - Many aspects of business changed when the global COVID-19 pandemic began almost three years ago — perhaps none more than supply chain and transportation logistics.

Our supply chain and transportation logistics professionals acted with agility and innovation to find new ways to get our customers their pulp products when every mode of transportation was bogged down, slowing the movement of goods throughout the world.

At Domtar, the shortage of vessel space, containers, rail cars and over-the-road trucks during and after the pandemic created new shipping challenges. Goods that couldn’t be shipped right away needed to be stored. At times, we held more than 100,000 tons of backlogged pulp product at our mills waiting to be exported.

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Canfor Pulp to Permanently Close Kraft Pulp Line at Prince George Mill

Jan. 12, 2023 - Following extensive analysis of its operating footprint and the long-term supply of economic residual fibre, Canfor Pulp Products is announcing the decision to permanently close the pulp line at its Prince George Pulp and Paper Mill located in British Columbia, Canada.

The closure of the pulp line will result in a reduction of 280,000 tonnes per year of market kraft pulp.

Canfor pulp said the Specialty Paper facility at the site will continue to operate.

"In recent years, several sawmills have permanently closed in the Prince George region due to reductions in the allowable annual cut and challenges accessing cost-competitive fibre," explained Kevin Edgson, President and CEO of Canfor Pulp.

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International Forest Products Promotes Michael Collins to Senior Vice President

Jan. 6, 2023 - International Forest Products (IFP) today announced the promotion of Michael Collins to the position of Senior Vice President of IFP.

Collins joined IFP in 2008 and has served in a wide variety of roles, including logistics, sales operations and trading. He will continue to oversee IFP’s domestic containerboard trading; however, as part of his new role, he will also focus on strategies to improve IFP’s operational efficiency and to prepare the company for future growth.

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Metsä Group and VR Intensify Their Cooperation on Sustainability

Jan. 3, 2023 - Both Metsä Group and VR are companies with major role in the society and they therefore play an important part in improving environmental performance and responsibility. The companies are intensifying their cooperation on sustainability in logistics and have agreed a new joint target to halve emissions from transport covered by their cooperation by 2030.

In addition, Metsä Group aims to transfer some of its current road transports to railways.

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Wagenborg Orders Fourth EasyMax Vessel with Royal Niestern Sander Shipyard

Jan. 2, 2023 - Wagenborg Shipping and Royal Niestern Sander Shipyard have come to an agreement to start the construction of another 14,000 dwt EasyMax vessel. This fourth vessel in the EasyMax series is expected to be delivered in autumn 2024.

According to Wagenborg, the repeat order fits perfectly into the production process at the yard, as the construction of the third Easymax is currently in full swing. This sister ship of the MV ‘Egbert Wagenborg’ and MV ‘Máxima’ is expected to be delivered by the end of 2023.

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Euroports Finland Buys Substantial Part of BB Logistics Oy

Dec. 30, 2022 - Euroports Finland Oy and the owners of BB Logistics Oy have signed an agreement, according to which the owners of BB Logistics will sell a substantial part of the company to Euroports Finland. The agreement brings together two innovative companies that share a commitment to providing the highest quality maritime supply-chain solutions to customers across the globe.

BB Logistics is a fast-growing, reliable logistics service provider operating in five ports in Finland: Kemi, Oulu, Kristiinankaupunki, Kaskinen and Hamina. The company has 40 employees, who will continue to work for BB Logistics.

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Port of Antwerp-Bruges Provides Update on Certified Pick up

Dec. 28, 2022 (Press Release) - The terminals on the Antwerp port platform are further preparing themselves to implement Certified Pick up, the container delivery process based on identity rather than PIN codes. In the context of a digitally secure port, the implementation of Certified Pick up is one of Port of Antwerp-Bruges' priorities. Over the past few months, a lot of optimisations have taken place, in order to tailor the process even better to users' needs.

A Clear Customs Light

Certified Pick up brings users more transparency about the delivery process of a container. Customs status is an important factor in this.

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UPM in Final Phases of Construction on Its Eucalyptus Pulp Mill in Uruguay

Dec. 23, 2022 - UPM is finalizing the construction works of the greenfield eucalyptus pulp mill in Uruguay and enters the final phases of the project. The start-up of the 2.1 million tonne/year mill near Paso de los Toros is expected by the end of the first quarter of 2023.

While the project work continues intensively, the finalization of the construction works is an important milestone in the project. Since the investment decision in July 2019, over 20,000 people have been involved in the various construction sites related to the growth investment, including the construction of the Paso de los Toros mill, the pulp terminal in the port of Montevideo and the 11 housing areas around Paso de los Toros.

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Georgia Ports Authority to Renovate Ocean Terminal Docks at Savannah

Dec. 12, 2022 - The Georgia Ports Authority Board has approved a plan to renovate and realign the docks at the Port of Savannah’s Ocean Terminal to better accommodate its expanding container operation.

GPA plans to shift breakbulk cargo carried by Wallenius Wilhelmsen Ocean to Colonel’s Island Terminal in Brunswick. Construction has started on 360,000 square feet of dockside warehousing that will serve auto processing, as well as three additional buildings and 85 acres of auto storage space on the south side of the island.

The 200-acre Ocean Terminal facility will be modified in two phases.

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Södra Launches Major Initiative to Electrify Transportation

Nov. 25, 2022 - Södra is now launching a major initiative to electrify the operation’s transportation. A new project will study the future potential to operate electric-powered trucks, forklifts and loaders that can help further reduce the association’s fossil-fuel emissions.

Södra is currently a net producer of electricity and is aiming to reach net-zero emissions of greenhouse gases by 2040. A natural step in this process is to electrify the vehicle fleet and operations. Parts of the mills’ vehicle fleet already run on electricity, including electric forklifts at the Värö and Långasjö sawmills. This work will now enter the next phase and Södra is launching a project for the large-scale electrification of internal and external transportation. The project includes the electrification of logging and chip trucks in Södra’s own haulage business as well as vehicles at mills.

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Euroports Inaugurates Three New Berths for Forest Products at Its Gaolan Terminal in South China

Nov. 22, 2022 - Euroports is pleased to announce the inauguration of three new berths at its Gaolan Terminal in South China. Furthermore, the company expects another berth to be approved for international cargo by the end of 2022.

The new area grants Euroports a total of five berths for forest products operations.

Earlier this year Euroports built a new warehouse in Gaolan designed to optimize breakbulk in – container out operations, allowing the port operator to better serve destinations for containerized cargo in China and Southeast Asia.

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OneFortyOne’s Kaituna’s Woodchip Sets Sail from New Zealand to Japan

Nov. 22, 2022 - OneFortyOne’s Kaituna Sawmill and its partners celebrated its first export shipment of woodchip out of Port Marlborough (New Zealand), as part of a new export initiative with partner Marusumi Whangarei Co., Ltd.

Woodchip has been accumulating at Shakespeare Bay over the last three months, in preparation for the loading of the Southern Star Vessel which docked on Monday, Nov. 7 and departed Wednesday, Nov. 9.

Another vessel is planned for the new year of which woodchip is now being accumulated.

Port Marlborough has been a critical partner in providing logistical support for the trial operation, including 4,000m2 (0.4 ha) in the port’s Shakespeare Bay log yard currently for the operation.

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Metsä Group Says Port Warehouse and Private Track Project for Kemi Bioproduct Mill on Schedule

Nov. 21, 2022 - Metsä Group announced that construction and installation work for its new Kemi bioproduct mill is progressing as planned and on schedule for completion by the end of the year.

The new 110 kV power line has now been completed, and it will be deployed when the mill comes online. Bioelectricity generated by the mill will be transmitted to the national grid along the new power line. The mill will produce 2.0 TWh of renewable energy annually, which is equivalent to 2.5 per cent of Finland’s overall electricity production.

The autonomous cranes in the woodyard have reached roof height. The electric cranes will unload wood arriving by train and lorry independently.

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Euroports Rauma Handles Terminal Operations for Metsä Fibre’s New Sawmill

Oct. 20, 2022 - Metsä Fibre on Sept. 30 started production at its new sawmill in Rauma, Finland. The new sawmill has an annual capacity of 750,000 cubic metres of pine sawn timber, and the annual use of pine logs sourced in Finland is around 1.5 million cubic metres. The sawn timber produced in Rauma is sold mainly to Europe and Asia.

The sawmill’s location enables smooth logistics to transport the sawn timber to customers through the Port of Rauma. The new sawmill does not have its own warehouses. Instead, finished sawn timber is packaged and automatically loaded onto lorries, which transport it directly to the port.

Euroports Rauma Oy is responsible for the sawmill’s terminal operations.

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IFPTA's New President Bob Davidson Welcomed by Members and Guests At Transport Symposium 24

(l-r) Alan Bog, Bob Davidson, and Tom Mutz.Sept. 2022 - At the conclusion of Transport Symposium 24, outgoing IFPTA president Alan Bog (Euroports) and secretary/treasurer Tom Mutz (PENN Warehousing) gathered on the stage and introduced Bob Davidson (Eldorado Brasil) to the audience as IFPTA's new president.

Mr. Mutz will continue to serve as secretary/treasurer.

In addition to the Association’s new president, four new directors were elected to the Board by the membership: 

  • Milind Balaji, Director of Global Distribution and Services, Georgia-Pacific - Packaging and Cellulose Division
  • Lars Gottschenkis, Senior Sales Manager Pulp & Paper, J Müller
  • Andy Powell, Commercial Director, G2 Ocean
  • Jyrki Ranki, Vice President, Maritime Logistics, Metsä Group

The following directors continue to serve their terms:

  • Horst Kaupke, Manager, Marketing & Sales, BLG Cargo Logistics GmbH
  • Ana Paula Trilho, Diretora, APT Group
  • Rhoda Voth, General Manager, North America, Saga Welco AS
  • Kelly Williams, Vice President, Terminals and Stevedoring, Western Stevedoring

TS 24 took place September 18-20, 2022 at the Sawgrass Marriott Resort and Spa in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida.

IFPTA’s Transport Symposium is the longest running conference and exhibition dedicated to the global forest products logistics industry. Brought to you by Fastmarkets, in association with IFPTA, the event brings together all the key players throughout the pulp and paper supply chain.

Our conference sessions are focused on keeping attendees updated on trending topics in worldwide transport, materials handling and distribution of forest products, while the event’s exhibitions and networking receptions are available for meeting industry colleagues and forging new partnerships.


SCA Announces Beginning of Land Construction in Tunadal Port

Oct. 7, 2022 – SCA announced that land construction work is starting in the port of Tunadal, just outside of Sundsvall (Sweden). The work involves dredging in the port that will use the dredged material to create more land surface area that will support an expansion of cargo handling.

The project is part of SCA’s investment of some SEK 460 million ($54.7 million) in Tunadal Port between 2021 and 2024, which was announced in February of 2021. At that time, SCA explained that investments in its Östrand pulp mill, in addition to the ongoing investments in pulp production at its Ortviken industrial site, will more than double the volume of pulp to be shipped from the Sundsvall region.

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UPM Inaugurates Its New Deep Sea Pulp Terminal in the Port of Montevideo

Oct. 5, 2022 - UPM inaugurates today its new pulp terminal in the port of Montevideo, Uruguay. This investment of approximately USD 280 million is a fundamental part of UPM’s USD 3.47 billion growth investment in Uruguay that includes a state-of-the-art pulp mill in Paso de los Toros, new eucalyptus tree nursery as well as local community investments in Paso de los Toros.

The new pulp terminal is located in the newly developed deep sea port in Montevideo, and it will have a direct rail connection to the new UPM Paso de los Toros mill. In the future, all UPM pulp from Uruguay will be shipped with fully loaded ocean vessels directly from Uruguay.

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Metsä Fibre’s State-of-the-Art Sawmill Starts in Rauma, Finland

Metsa FibreSept. 30, 2022 - Metsä Fibre announced that its new state-of-the-art pine sawmill in Rauma, Finland, has moved from production test run to continuous sawn timber production. The sawmill is operating continuously in three shifts.

Construction of the Rauma sawmill started in the spring of 2020, and the value of the investment is approximately EUR 260 million. This is the largest sawmill investment ever in Finland.

The Rauma sawmill is a worldwide forerunner in technology, efficiency and operating models. Technological innovations such as machine vision, self-learning artificial intelligence and integrated information systems that control the sawline’s various functions provide improved conditions for the production of sawn timber of consistent quality and the sawmill’s industrial efficiency.

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JAXPORT to Serve as Host Port for International Forest Products Supply Chain Event

Sept. 9, 2022 - The Jacksonville Port Authority (JAXPORT) will serve as the host port for the 24th annual Pulp and Paper International (PPI) Transport Symposium. The event is the longest-running conference dedicated to the forest products supply chain and attracts global leaders from throughout the industry.

Organized by Fastmarkets RISI, in association with the International Forest Products Transport Association (IFPTA), PPI Transport Symposium 24 is September 18-20, 2022, at the Sawgrass Marriott Resort and Spa in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida.

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Brazil's Pulp and Paper Sector Sees Growth in Production, Exports, in First Half 2022

Aug. 31, 2022 - According to the Brazilian Tree Industry (Ibá), in the first half of 2022, pulp production grew 7.8% compared to the same period of the previous year, and paper production showed a 3.1% increase.

In the first half of 2022, China remains the main destination for pulp exports produced in Brazil, reaching US$ 1.5 billion traded. Latin America remains Brazil's leading paper buyer and has totaled US$ 966 million in product negotiations. The region is also the foreign market that most acquired wood panels, which totaled US$ 126.3 million.

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Ponsse Launches New Technology Concept: Electric Forestry Forwarder

Aug. 17, 2022 - Ponsse and Epec are introducing the PONSSE EV1, an electric forest machine technology concept.

The PONSSE EV1 concept has been developed for forwarders with a 15-tonne load-carrying capacity -- the most popular Ponsse forwarder size category. The concept machine features a fully electric powertrain, as well as Epec's power distribution unit and hybrid control unit. The machine's powertrain operates fully with battery energy. Batteries are charged using a Range Extender, which is a combustion engine at this stage of development.

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Impact of Skyrocketing Fuel Prices on Forest Products Transportation

The following was recently published by the Forest Resources Association

July 7, 2022 - Rising fuel prices impact everyone’s pocketbook through increased costs which are driving up prices. This increase in cost is especially true for the trucking industry, which is critical to maintaining the supply chain and is often viewed as a barometer of the U.S. economy. While 2020 data from the U.S. Department of Energy Alternative Fuels Data Center shows that the average fuel economy for cars was 24.2 miles/gallon, it was 5.29 miles/gallon for heavy trucks with a gross vehicle weight rating exceeding 33,000 pounds, such as a 5-axle tractor-trailer log truck. As trucks are vital for moving raw forest products from in-woods harvest sites to mill consumers, rising fuel prices significantly impact the cost of those deliveries.

Impact of Skyrocketing Fuel Prices on Forest Products Transportation


 

SCA's Electric Timber Truck from Scania Is Now in Operation

July 6, 2022 - SCA, together with Scania, has developed the world's first electric timber truck with a capacity to carry 80 tonnes and the new truck has been delivered to SCA.

“We have come a long way in the industrial processes that are already today 96 percent fossil-free,” said Hans Djurberg, head of sustainability at SCA. “We are very happy to be able to break new ground together with Scania to make the heaviest transports fossil-free.”

SCA said the intention is for the vehicle to transport timber on the stretch between SCA's timber terminal in Gimonäs and the paper mill in Obbola outside Umeå. 

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JAXPORT Completes Final Phase of $100 Million in Berth Improvements at Blount Island

June 27, 2022 - The Jacksonville Port Authority (JAXPORT) announced today the completion of the final phase of $100 million in berth enhancements at the SSA Jacksonville Container Terminal (JCT) at Blount Island. The last stage of the project, the rehabilitation of 700 linear feet of deepwater berthing space, was completed at the end of June in coordination with the recently completed Jacksonville Harbor Deepening Project.

The SSA JCT now features a 47-foot channel depth with 2,400 linear feet of newly rebuilt berthing space capable of simultaneously accommodating two post-Panamax container ships.

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Arauco to Invest $3 Billion in Construction of New Pulp Mill in Brazil

June 23, 2022 - Arauco has announced that on June 22 it signed a US$3 billion investment collaboration agreement with the government of Mato Grosso Do Sul in Brazil for the construction of a new pulp mill.

Arauco has named the initiative "Project Sucuriú."

The new mill would have a production capacity of 2.5 million tons of hardwood pulp and would be located 50 km from the municipality of Inocência.

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Port of Tarragona Sees Maritime Traffic Increase by 7.1% in May

June 22, 2022 - The Port of Tarragona reported maritime traffic at the Port continues with the upward trend by + 7.1%, compared to May 2021, handling a total of 2.69 million tons in its facilities.

In the accumulated period, January-May, the figures continue to mark a positive trend with a growth of 4.3%, with 13.02 million tonnes moved, compared to 2021.

It continues with a positive trend in the group of goods 'paper and paper pulp' with a + 13% with the 67,881 tons moved during this period, which positions this traffic in the best month of May in recent years.

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Port of Mobile Container Volumes Remain Robust, Intermodal Rail Posts Triple Digit Growth

June 16, 2022 - Calendar year-to-date 2022 through May container volumes remained robust at the Port of Mobile posting 225,883 TEUs or an 11.6 percent gain over volumes handled during the same period last year. May 2022 container volumes at the Port of Mobile were down 6 percent handling 41,232 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) versus 43,865 TEUs handled in May 2021. May’s dip in container terminal volumes reflected the volatility of Trans-Pacific trade associated with prolonged COVID-19 lockdowns in China.

Uncongested and fluid, the Port’s intermodal rail growth in May exceeded expectations with 208 percent growth compared to May in 2021. Year to date 2022 intermodal rail volumes remained in triple digits with 130 percent growth over the same time-period in 2021.

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Chinese Demand Drove Global Trade of Hardwood Chips Higher in Early 2022

June 13, 2022 - In 2021, the world’s shipments of wood chips reached almost 35 million m3, close to the highest on record. Significant expansion of pulp capacity in China combined with a lack of domestic wood fiber has driven the global increase in traded wood chips over the past decade. About four-fifths of the trade was hardwood chips in 2021, predominantly destined for pulp mills in Asia, while the remaining volume was softwood chips.

According to the Wood Resource Quarterly, importation to China reached a new record-high of 14.8 million odmt in 2021, a 12 % increase from the previous year. This rise was a continuation of an unprecedented upward trend that started in 2008 when China imported only one million odmt.

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International Forest Products Partners in Creation of Global Forest Products AB

May 13, 2022 - International Forest Products LLC (IFP) announces its participation in the creation of Global Forest Products AB (GFP), a new joint venture trading company in Gothenburg, Sweden. The venture is a collaboration between IFP, Fredrik Anderson, and Johan Rafstedt and will provide suppliers and customers a platform with sound financing, transparency, and cost efficiency.

Mr. Anderson has more than 25 years of experience in the forest products industry, most recently as CEO of CellMark, and Mr. Rafstedt brings 25 years of financial services experience, including the role of CFO of CellMark.

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