FORT FRANCES, Ontario, May 6, 2014 - Resolute Forest Products Inc. today announced the permanent closure of its previously idled pulp and paper mill in Fort Frances, Ontario.
The company announced an extended period of market-related outage on its remaining paper machine in January. The kraft pulp mill and another paper machine have been idled since November of 2012.
"We tried hard to find a way to reposition these assets, particularly the pulp mill. But unfortunately, due to end product markets, the mill's operational configuration and its cost position, we've concluded that there was no economically viable option for the pulp and paper operations at Fort Frances," said Richard Garneau, president and chief executive officer.
The company will provide appropriate notice to staff who were retained to manage the idled facility. Resolute will also work with affected employees, all levels of government and other local authorities on programs to lessen the impact of this permanent closure. Affected employees will be considered for job vacancies and opportunities at other company facilities.
Resolute is currently exploring opportunities to continue to operate the biomass boiler and electricity-producing steam turbine. The company is also progressing on three important investment initiatives underway in Northwestern Ontario: the construction of a new sawmill in Atikokan; the upgrade and restart of the idled Ignace sawmill; and the construction of a wood pellet plant at the Thunder Bay sawmill.