We won paper war with the Czechs

opublikowano: 23-01-2008, 11:23

Warsaw (Puls Biznesu) – Mondi Swiecie will invest record EUR 350m. The company has already promised to invest and wants to  borrow EUR 150m from EIB.

Paper producers always invest a lot. But not every day they spend PLN 1bn (EUR 273m). This year, two such projects worth jointly PLN 2.4bn may be expected. These may be the biggest investments this year. Stora Enso will spend EUR 320 to develop and modernize its plant in Ostroleka. In Swiecie, Mondi Packaging Paper Swiecie (MPP Swiecie) will invest. At the beginning of January, Maciej Kunda, MPP Swiecie CEO, said that there was no final decision concerning the investment. And now he says the same. But Poland has already won the project with the Czech Republic.

“The company received late last year permission to start operations in the special economic zone and pledged to invest. No big investor has ever withdrawn after he was given permission. It was very difficult to have special economic zone at Mondi plant, it was one of the first such projects after criteria were made tougher. The company, however, showed us a business plan for the same project in the Czech Republic. If they invested there, Mondi would limit operations and cut jobs in Poland. This convinced the ministry of economy”, Teresa Kaminska, the COE of Pomorska special economic zone said.

Mr. Kunda remains cautious.

“I expect the supervisory board to make final decision about the investment within several weeks”, so MPP Swiecie head.

“In the permission, we pledged to invest EUR 220m till the end of 2010 and create 80 new jobs”, Adam Mrzyglod, the company’s financial director said.

Today, there are 891 people employed at the plant. Investors usually declare to invest less than they really plan in the permissions. Mondi, which is in 66 percent controlled by Framondi consortium, will invest much more.

And this will be even more than EUR 320, the amount the company mentioned last year. The company has asked EIB to lend it up to EUR 150m for a project worth jointly EUR 350m. EIB is not the only alternative.

“If the project is implemented, we will consider different options of financing it. We have not made final decision what percentage of the investment will be covered from our own funds, and what from credits. We will talk with several banks”, Maciej Kunda said.

Before, the company’s representatives said that because of the investment, the dividend would be lower.

(PLN 1 = EUR 0.273)

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