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Today it is a wet dream which moved yesterday one step closer to the goal. And it is huge! Investment estimation is totally 1.5B€. Directly they will recruit 250 people, indirectly the effect is 2500 people. Nice boost to the economy of Northern Finland which Metsä Group will provide, maybe. Final decision will be done later.

What is the price what we (you and me who doesn’t have anything to do with it) have to pay? It already started yesterday. We had parliament election and the government negotiations officially started yesterday. Obviously local administration from the north sent a message to the government programme negotiations that we need more money to the basic infrastructure. Roads are shitty (like everywhere else) etc. That whining we have to suffer who knows how long.

The second big discussion will be how much forest can be harvested to the production without harming the carbon sink. We will hear statements from environmental organisations, industry, government officers, professors and God knows who. Talk will continue forever. And forever. Sad thing is that the final truth is not known in advance, it is only a best guess. Final truth will be found afterwards so we can do only an educated guess. At least docent-on-duty will be busy and paid.

I think the real friction is part of the story is what is the extent of value added. When I was in school, some decades ago (not a century) they taught us that it is better that you process the goods as much as possible before you carry them outside the boarders. That is higher value from natural resources. Some decades ago there was a saying “Finland lives from paper”. With these current parameters we are moving backwards in the value chain of the industry. In my eyes, that is not so good. We have bad examples of that type of approach, even very close by. Country is pumping and selling raw oil. Very basic stuff, but very sensitive to the variations of the markets. Instead of selling raw oil, it should be developed to more advanced products.

The possibility is that we are currently investing in research of new type of product done from the wood fibre. That is our real change. If the build of the new factory takes about five years that is the window for the new development. There should be large variety of new products based on wood fibre waiting for new source of raw material. The ultimate target should be that none of the produced pulp wouldn’t pass the country’s boards as a raw material. This is a Vision for our industry.
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