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Largest NZ Wood Processing Plant For Gisborne

4 July 2002 (embargoed till 2 pm)

Largest NZ Wood Processing Plant For Gisborne –
Over $100 Million Investment Will Provide Hundreds Of New Jobs


Economic Development Minister Jim Anderton today welcomed the announcement of one of the largest single jobs machine successes with the news that Gisborne will be home for New Zealand’s largest wood processing plant.

Hikurangi Forest Farms has today advised me that based on what has been agreed by the Government, the Gisborne District Council and Port Gisborne, it will commit to the establishment of a wood processing facility in New Zealand. This facility will process wood products, which are internationally competitive, from Hikurangi Forest Farms own forestry resource on the East Coast of New Zealand.

“The new Hikurangi Forest Farms wood processing plant will be nearly double the size of New Zealand’s current largest plant (Waipa in Rotorua), and we will see hundreds of new jobs,” said Jim Anderton.

“The new plant will be so large that it will process the equivalent of the volume of logs currently shipped out from the Gisborne Port per year and will be three times the size of the largest plant in the region.

“The level of investment needed to build a processing plant of this quality and size will be in excess of $100 million.

“The investment by Hikurangi will be a crucial development that will encourage other investment and will provide downstream employment to service the large plant.

“This announcement addresses the wall of wood issue and at the same time offers sustainable employment and economic development for the East Coast region.

“I want to congratulate Hikurangi Forest Farms for their commitment to the people of Gisborne and this significant investment in New Zealand. I welcome an investor such as Hikurangi Forest Farms in the wood processing industry with a long term investment and value added strategy.

“This important investment is the result two years of constructive work by the Wood Processing Steering Group to develop this industry. The Industry Representatives brought together by this Coalition Government have worked to remove barriers to growth and create jobs and that is exactly what this announcement demonstrates,” said Jim Anderton.

Hikurangi Forest Farms Ltd has said they appreciate the efforts over the last two years of the Ministry of Economic Development, the Gisborne District Council, Port Gisborne and Industry NZ in assisting in providing funding, skills development, port development and streamlining the process for forest industry investment in New Zealand.

Hikurangi Forest Farms Ltd is owned by Malaysian company Samling Ltd.

Ends

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