The project will provide a huge boost for the country’s economy, allowing it to generate wealth and jobs from the use of renewable resources whilst conserving its environment and honouring the principles of social responsibility.
Portucel Moçambique holds land use permits (DUATs) for an area of 173 thousand hectares in Zambézia province and 183 thousand hectares in Manica Province, where it plans to establish plantations which will gradually cover only 2/3 of the total area. This will avoid any need for resettlement of local people or changes to their livelihood and make it possible to protect all significant cultural and environmental heritage in these areas.
The areas covered by the land use permits were carefully selected to offer prime soil and climate conditions for forestry operations, as well as access to the infrastructures needed for producing and transporting paper pulp.
The project has included setting up nurseries in Mozambique, allowing Portucel Moçambique to produce locally the eucalyptus species best suited to local conditions.
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New pulp plant in 2023
When the planting and forest growth goals are reached, the production unit for processing eucalyptus into paper pulp will be installed, with inauguration foreseen for 2023.
Portucel Moçambique uses primarily local manpower in implementing its forestry venture, avoiding mechanical operations wherever possible, as a way of maximising the project's positive social impact on the region.
The venture already employs thousands of workers drawn from local communities and once fully established will offer a total of 7,000 jobs. It will also have a significant impact on development of the industrial and agricultural fabric of the two provinces involved, generating indirect employment in the local business community.
Once the forestry plantations are established and in full production, work will commence on an industrial facility to process eucalyptus into paper pulp. Output from this mill is expected to boost Mozambique's exports by around US$ 1,000 million.
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Output from this mill is expected to boost Mozambique's exports by around US$ 1,000 million.
The forestry project was granted an environmental license by the Ministry of Land, Environment and Rural Development in 2015, after a public and consultation process at community, district, provincial and national level, involving more than 15,000 citizens at 71 meetings and events.