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Kinleith Restructure Consultation Period Completed

17 May 2002

Kinleith Restructuring Consultation Period Completed: Decision within three weeks.

Brice Landman, Chief Executive of Carter Holt Harvey Kinleith, has confirmed that the first phase of consultation with employees over its restructuring proposals has concluded. Decisions on any changes to the proposed new structure will be made within the next three weeks.

“On 27 March, when we announced a restructuring proposal, we asked all employees to contribute their ideas, suggestions and comments through a comprehensive consultation process,” said Mr Landman. “Although I have been disappointed by the lack of response from waged employees, salaried employees have made many thoughtful submissions.”

“The mill management team will now formally consider all the submissions and feedback, and will make its decisions on a new structure.”

Mr Landman said that some of the submissions received would require further consideration and possibly meetings.

He said he wanted to announce the structure as soon as possible so that employees and the local community would have certainty about the future of the mill. Balanced against that, however, was the need to ensure the business made the best decision. “I am confident that we will be able to announce the new structure within the next three weeks,” he said.

Once the structural decision has been announced, a second period of consultation with employees will consider the best method of implementation.

The company is also continuing to negotiate with the combined site unions to secure a new collective employment agreement, to replace the agreement that expired in March 2001. “Agreement in principle has been reached on most of the key issues. I have been heartened by the tone of the talks so far, and I hope that we will be able to reach an early agreement that will secure a sustainable future for Kinleith as an innovative, world-class operation.”

Global developments, including fresh competitive challenges from new technology mills in developing countries, have highlighted the need to reorganise Kinleith as soon as possible. The company aims, through the reorganisation, to put Kinleith on a sustainable footing from which it can succeed globally.

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