Kawerau’s Norske Skog Tasman mill: Future of 160 jobs to be decided

The owners of a Bay of Plenty mill have met with employees today to begin consulting on the future of the operation.

Norske Skog began exploring “all options” for the future of its Tasman mill in Kawerau in October last year.

The mill employs 160 people and has been operating in the small Bay of Plenty town for 65 years.

A spokesman for the company said no decision has been made and consultations will take place over the next few weeks.

“The company does not intend commenting further until the consultation process is complete and it has had the opportunity to consider feedback from employees,” a statement said.

The review of operations raised urgent questions last year in Kawerau, population 7150, including from the town’s mayor who said changes could have a “huge” affect on the eastern Bay of Plenty.

In a statement issued by Norske’s head office in Oslo at the weekend, the company said it had announced to employees and stakeholders it was starting a process to identify alternative production options for its Tasman newsprint mill in Kawerau.

It said this was a result of the rapid, negative and likely irreversible impact Covid-19 had on the industry in the region.

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