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Talks continue in sale of Terrace Bay and NewPage mills


March 9, 2012
By Pulp & Paper Canada

Prospective buyers have been touring the Terrace Bay mill in Northern Ontario, while in Nova Scotia, the bidder on the NewPage pulp and paper mill is ironing out details with the provincial utility and the employees’ union.

Prospective buyers have been touring the Terrace Bay mill in Northern Ontario, while in Nova Scotia, the bidder on the NewPage pulp and paper mill is ironing out details with the provincial utility and the employees’ union.

The Chronicle Journal reported in early March that eight companies with an interest in purchasing the insolvent Terrace Bay pulp mill had toured the facility.

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The mill was closed in October 2011, following an explosion that killed one worker. The mill shut down for repairs, and then extended the shut down due to poor market conditions. In January, the company was put under creditor protection and the mill put up for sale.

Under the sales process approved by the courts, a new owner is to be in place by the end of April.

The Chronicle Journal also reports that the Ministry of Labour has concluded its investigation in the fatal explosion, but hasn’t yet decided whether there were any violations of the labour code.

For the NewPage Port Hawkesbury mill in Nova Scotia, the sales process is more advanced. The court appointed monitor is in negotiations with Pacific West Commercial Corp., an affiliate of Stern Partners Inc. of Vancouver, to finalize a going-concern sale of the mill.

In an update to the court presented in February, Ernst & Young said negotiations are proceeding on several fronts, according to the Chronicle Herald newspaper.

A plan of arrangement is being developed to determine how the company will handle its debt. In addition, Pacific West has contacted the Communications Energy and Paperworkers Union, Local 972, to schedule negotiations on a new labour agreement, the newspaper reports.

Talks between Pacific West and the province on fibre costs, and Nova Scotia Power Inc. on energy costs, are also ongoing.


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