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Kruger Packaging to Invest C$250 million in Trois-Rivières Mill

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Kruger Packaging L.P. this week announced an investment of C$250 million to convert the No. 10 newsprint machine (PM 10) at its Trois-Rivières, Qué., Canada, mill to produce 100% recycled lightweight linerboard. This major project, to be carried out with the support of the government of Québec, was announced in the presence of Philippe Couillard, premier of Québec; Laurent Lessard, minister of forests, fauna, and parks; Jean-Denis Girard, minister for small and medium enterprises, regulatory streamlining and regional economic development (minister responsible for the Mauricie region and MNA for Trois-Rivières); and Joseph Kruger II, chairman of the board and CEO of Kruger Inc.

  

The modernization project will generate significant growth opportunities for the Trois-Rivières facility, contributing to secure operations and the 270 jobs at the mill. The project has received $190 million in support from the Québec government, which includes an C$84-million loan to finance the cost of the conversion and a C$106-million participation, through Investissement Québec, in a new company that now combines all of Kruger's Containerboard and Packaging activities. As a result of this investment, the Québec government will have a 25% ownership in this new company which has assets in excess of C$600 million, and more than 800 jobs, including 620 in Québec, will be secured.

During the coming 20 months, PM 10 will be completely modernized to incorporate some of the most advanced containerboard manufacturing technology. Once PM 10 is up and running in 2017, it will produce 360,000 metric tpy of 100% recycled lightweight linerboard annually, a portion of which will be sold to Kruger Packaging's box plants in LaSalle (Québec ) and Brampton (Ontario), while the remainder will be sold on the market. The containerboard to be manufactured in Trois-Rivières is seeing huge growth in North America and around the world, as packaging manufacturers seek to produce increasingly lighter and stronger products.

The Trois-Rivières mill will continue to produce newsprint on PM 10 until two months before the end of the conversion project. Meanwhile, the mill's other newsprint production line, PM 7, will remain in operation into the future. Overall, Kruger's three newsprint production facilities will have an annual output of 600,000 metric tons, maintaining the company's ranking among North America's top newsprint manufacturers.

Founded in 1904, Kruger is a major producer of publication papers, tissue products, containerboard, and packaging made from recycled fibers, green and renewable energy, cellulosic biomaterials, and wines and spirits. Kruger has facilities in Québec, Ontario, British Columbia, and Newfoundland and Labrador, as well as in Tennessee, Maine, New York, Virginia, and Rhode Island in the U.S.  

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