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BC approves transfer of Canfor’s Vavenby forest tenure to Interfor


March 2, 2020
By Maria Church
Maria Church

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B.C. Forest Minister Doug Donaldson announced Friday the provincial government has consented to the transfer of Canfor’s Vavenby forest tenure to Interfor for $60 million.

Canfor announced the agreement to sell the Vavenby tenure in June last year, along with the closure of its Vavenby sawmill. The tenure includes Tree Farm Licence (TFL) 18 and replaceable forest licence A18688, located in the Kamloops Timber Supply Area near Vavenby, B.C. The two licences have a combined allowable annual cut of approximately 349,000 cubic metres per year.

“We are pleased that Premier Horgan and Minister Donaldson have approved the transfer of forest tenure associated with the Vavenby mill to Interfor,” Canfor president and CEO Don Kayne said. “With strong leadership from Premier Horgan, today’s decision demonstrates the B.C. government’s support of the Interior forest sector as it continues the difficult process of reducing production capacity to align with the available timber supply. Throughout this process we have appreciated the opportunity to work in partnership with the Simpcw First Nation, the local communities and the United Steelworkers.”

The tenure transfer is expected to take place before the end of this quarter.

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As part of the sale, Canfor will create a $200,000 legacy fund with the District of Clearwater, provide $150,000 over five years to the United Way, and will provide $500,000 in funding to the Wells Gray Community Forest.

According to a government news release, Interfor will be required to continue discussions with local secondary and value-added manufacturers in the North and South Thompson on log purchasing and wood-fibre supply agreements. Interfor must also work with displaced woodlands employees on further opportunities for employment.