Today UPM Kymi celebrated the topping out ceremony for its pulp mill production expansion project, KYMI700: the new pulp drying machine, debarking plant and modernisation of the softwood fibre line. A total of around 200 participants are invited in the celebrations including those working on the project and guests.
UPM invests € 160 million into the Kymi pulp mill to strengthen its position in the growing end use sectors of the global pulp market, namely tissue, speciality papers and packaging board. Following this investment, Kymi’s annual pulp production capacity will increase by 170,000 tonnes to 700,000 tonnes of bleached northern softwood and birch pulp.
The investment at Kymi mill will comprise a new pulp drying machine, modernisation of the softwood fibre line, a new debarking plant as well as improvements in the energy balance of the Kymi integrate consisting of pulp and paper mills.
Construction progressing well alongside normal production
The construction work that began in June is on schedule. At the moment, around 150 people are working in different project sites. The current and initial jobs are, among others, laying foundations, steel construction installation, painting, tank and pulp tower installations, as well as demolition work at the softwood fibre line. Machine installation will take place in January. The most significant construction contracts have been given to businesses located in the northern part of the Kymenlaakso region.
"The biggest challenge has been the pulp drying machine. The demolition of the old machine hall, including land construction work and implosions, has been successful, while paper production has been ongoing in the same location. We can be especially pleased that we have achieved this with no accidents in any project area that would have resulted in sick leave. We emphasise the importance of safety measures at our sites, and the construction firms take it seriously," says project manager Tero Ojala.
At its largest, the construction team will number 800 people next summer when the new facilities become operational. The project will be completed in the autumn of 2015.
The investment and construction works have a positive effect on the employment and businesses in the region. The increasing use of wood in the mill integrate will bring wood harvest and transportation work for forest industry professionals and earnings for forest owners.
After its completion, UPM Kymi will be one of the most modern pulp mills in Finland, together with the € 360 million pulp mill chemical recovery plant completed in 2008.