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Nampak salutes paper mill expansion

South Africa – Paper and packaging company Nampak has officially opened a new paper mill in Rosslyn outside Pretoria in South Africa which has massively increased the capacity of its corrugated business.

The Rand 800 million (US$ 97 million) project adjacent to an existing mill enables Nampak to extend its paper output for corrugated box and container usage from 50 000 tonnes to around 140 000 tonnes per annum, according to Nampak’s General Manager Dr Raymond Lund.

The Nampak board approved the expansion project in 2006 at a budget of some Rand 500 million but costs crept higher as a result of certain challenges surrounding plant start-up. The first reel of saleable paper from the expansion was produced in 2009. Boasting a capacity of around 95 000-100 000 tonnes per year, the plant is currently running at around 80% of its capability but Dr Lund hopes full capacity will be achieved before the end of the year.

According to Nampak Corrugated’s Managing Director Christiaan Burmeister, the group has processed some 120 000 tonnes of recovered paper in the past 12 months but hopes to boost this figure to around 150 000 tonnes in the next 12 months. He added that Nampak is investigating certain options to mitigate the effects of higher input costs such as co-generation and implementation of a closed water system; at the same time, he noted that the expansion plant is already operating on water and electricity savings of around 50% when compared with the older plant.

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