NewPage Corp. announced plans yesterday to take downtime on both paper machines at its Port Hawkesbury mill in Nova Scotia, Canada. The downtime is scheduled to begin September 10 for the mill’s PM1 newsprint machine and September 16 for the PM2 super-calendered machine.
According to NewPage, the decision is based on a combination of factors, including unfavorable exchange rates between the United States and Canada, as well as high utility and shipping costs. The company states these conditions have rendered its Port Hawkesbury mill operations unprofitable for more than a year.
Headquartered in Miamisburg, Ohio, NewPage expects to fulfill certain pre-existing orders for its super-calendered papers from its mill in Duluth, Minnesota, but does not produce newsprint from any other mill location and therefore will be unable to serve these customers during the downtime.
“Despite the continued dedication and efforts of our team at Port Hawkesbury to drive cost improvements, extremely challenging economic conditions at this location have forced us to make this difficult, but necessary business decision,” said George Martin, President and CEO for NewPage.
According to Mark Lukacs, Senior VP of Operations, “The Port Hawkesbury mill makes great newsprint, improved newsprint and super-calendered paper for the printing and publishing industries. We have a very dedicated and talented workforce and this downtime is in no way a reflection on them.”
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