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Metso-supplied paper making line starts up successfully at Hokuetsu Paper in Japan

The official inauguration ceremony of the largest paper making line ever built in Japan has taken place at Hokuetsu Paper Mills Ltd. in Niigata, Japan, on September 3rd after a successful start-up in July.

Thanks to this major investment delivered by Metso Paper, Hokuetsu Paper Mills Ltd. will become stronger than ever on the demanding market of Japan and Asia. The new production line will add close to 400,000 t/y to the Niigata mill's existing capacity of 1,000,000 tonnes of coated paper. According to Mr. Masaaki Miwa, Director, Hokuetsu Paper Mills, improving local and global competitiveness in quality and cost was the main reason for the investment.

The new 10.7 m wide paper machine is Metso's largest delivery to Japan. The entire delivery consists of a 1,600 m/min Metso OptiConcept paper machine with air, auxiliary and automation systems. The project management for the supplied equipment as well as installation advising, start-up support and training were included in the delivery.

As the flagship of Hokuetsu Paper Mills, the Niigata mill is one of the largest paper mills in Japan. It produces printing paper and white paperboard using state-of-the-art facilities and featuring a highly efficient production process from manufacture of pulp to finished paper products.

The product offering of Hokuetsu Paper Mills, established 1907, includes coated and specialty printing papers. Hokuetsu is also a major producer of white boxboard. Most of the company's sales come from customers in Japan. Hokuetsu's four mills are located in Niigata, Ichikawa, Hitachinaka, and Nagaoka. The company also cultivates timberland and builds related machinery.

Metso is a global engineering and technology corporation with 2007 net sales of over EUR 6 billion. Its over 27,000 employees in approximately 50 countries serve customers in the pulp and paper industry, rock and minerals processing, the energy industry and selected other industries. www.metso.com

For further information, please contact:

Yoshiharu Kayoh Vice President, Sales, Paper and Board business line Metso Paper Japan Co., Ltd., tel. +81 (0)90-2644-5161, yoshiharu.kayoh@metso.com

Teuvo Suviola Project Manager, Paper and Board Machines, Metso Paper, Inc. Tel. +358 40 551 9254, teuvo.suviola@metso.com