Pulp and Paper Canada

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Government proposal for Abitibi


October 26, 2005
By Pulp & Paper Canada

Stephenville residents may soon breathing a collective sigh of relief. An agreement between Abitibi-Consolidated an…

Stephenville residents may soon breathing a collective sigh of relief. An agreement between Abitibi-Consolidated and the provincial government will potentially secure capital the company could use to keep the mill running, and 260 people employed.

The establishment of a framework agreement involves an annual commitment of $10 million from the government and/or Newfoundland and Labrador Hydro.

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The accession is for a three-year period, however, Abitibi and the government will be able to renew the adjudication four times, totaling a timeframe of 12 years.

The agreement comes just after the company announced its Q3 results, which included net earnings of $99 million, compared to $182 million for the corresponding quarter in 2004.

In a conference call, CEO John Weaver confirmed that energy posed the biggest obstacle to restarting the mill, which was idled earlier in the week. “The biggest problem is energy,” Weaver said. However, the recent government proposal has incited the company to consider a potential restarting of the facility.

The future of the company’s Kenora, ON and Lufkin, TX mills have yet to be decided


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