Swedish forest products company SCA has revealed plans to invest approximately SEK 460 million (about $54.7 million) at its terminal at Tunadal on the Gulf of Bothnia over the next three years.

SCA upgrading Tunadal to a container port

SCA upgrading Tunadal to a container port

SCA is planning investments in its Östrand pulp mill, which in addition to ongoing investments in pulp production at the Ortviken industrial site, will more than double the volume of pulp that will be shipped from the Sundsvall region of Sweden. These increased volumes will mean that the wood pulp will be delivered to new markets increasing the demand to be able to handle larger ships. In addition the Tunadal and Bollsta sawmills are also ramping up their production volumes thus increasing the demand for improved port facilities.

As containers are being increasingly used to transport both pulp and solid-wood products the past five years have seen the volume of containerized trade from Tunadal more than double according to SCA.

“This development has meant that we need to be able to handle larger volumes of containerized cargo than previously and be able to accommodate larger ships.” commented Magnus Svensson, the President of Sourcing and Logistics at SCA. “With this expansion of the port, we will be able to load significantly larger ships and be able to ensure the efficient and competitive transport of the products that are growing in volume in the region. Key parts of the port expansion will be ready in time for the new volumes from the Ortviken industrial site comprising pulp and recycled textile fibers from Renewcell.”

As a first step in meeting this increased demand SCA is now building out the port so that it will be able to accommodate ships with a draft of 15 metres, compared with the current 12 metres. In the longer term SCA also plans to build a container port with an initial capacity of 100,000 TEU per year and there are also plans to use land south of the current port to create new space for cargo handling. The expanded port, including the combined terminal being built by the Municipality of Sundsvall and the improved rail links to Tunadal port, the area will have a port to meet international requirements.

By Dag Pike