Paper company also nears start of recycled board line in Vietnam.
Lee & Man Paper Manufacturing, a Hong Kong-based paper company, has started up a new recycled board line in China’s Sichuan province. The PM20 paper line will have an annual capacity of 320,000 metric tons of recycled containerboard per year.
In its semi-annual report, the company, one of the largest paper companies in China, also noted that its expansion project in Vietnam is on schedule and is expected to be operational by the end of 2014. When that recycled board line is complete it will be capable of producing an additional 400,000 metric tons of recycled paperboard products per year.
Despite the new capacity, in its interim report Lee & Man says it expects to face greater competitive pricing challenges in the second half of 2014. The company cites the sluggish economy in China, along with a general weakness in exports as primary areas of concern.
With the slowing Chinese economy, Lee & Man says it plans to slow its pace of capacity expansion; instead using funds to pay down debt.
Despite the short-term concerns, Lee & Man feels long run prospects are promising as the demand for packaging papers in China will likely continue to increase and more backward production capacities will close due to limited competitive power and tightened environmental protection regulations.