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WFP invests $30M in Duke Point sawmill

June 12, 2015 - Duke Point sawmill in Nanaimo, B.C. is about to get some serious upgrades, courtesy of $30 million in new capital investment from Western Forest Products.

Lee Doney, chair of Western Forest Products, made the announcement of his company’s investment in the mill on June 11.

“Our harvesting strategies and continued demand for our western red cedar and specialty lumber products allows us to make the needed strategic capital investment at this time,” said Doney. “We recognize we need to continue to invest in our operations to maintain our strong competitive position.”

B.C. Premier Christy Clark and Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations Minister Steve Thomson were on hand to join in the Doney’s celebrations following the announcement.

“Forestry plays a vital role in Vancouver Island's diverse economy,” said Clark. “By making investments and staying competitive, Western Forest Products is ensuring jobs stay right here in Nanaimo - jobs people can depend on to raise a family.”

“The forest sector is a mainstay of B.C.’s economy and it’s encouraging to see Vancouver Island’s largest forest company continue to invest in forestry’s future,” added Thomson.

Of the $30 million, $28 million will be invested in Western Forest Products’ Duke Point sawmill to modernize the sawmill, planer mill and install new autograding technology to improve productivity and reduce production costs. The company is investing $2 million in its Chemainus and Ladysmith sawmills. These investments are part of the company’s $125-million capital strategic investment program, which Western expects to improve its competitiveness and gain access to new markets.

Duke Point is one of seven sawmills that Western Forest Products has on Vancouver Island. The company also has two remanufacturing facilities and is North America’s largest cedar lumber manufacturer. The company ships products to 28 different countries and provides jobs to 2,000 employees and 1,500 contractors.

For more information on Western Forest Products, visit http://www.westernforest.com.

June 12, 2015  By  Andrew Snook

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