Chilean fuel and forestry conglomerate Empresas Copec SA will invest a record 1.2 billion US dollars this year, company president Roberto Angelini said on Wednesday, according to local newswire Valor Futuro.
Among other projects, Copec is joint-venturing with Finland's Stora Enso Oyj (SEOAY, STERV.HE) to build a 1.9 billion USD paper pulp plant in Conchillas, on the banks of the Rio de la Plata River in Uruguay and will joint-venture with shipping company Ultramar Agencia Maritima SA to develop the Minera Isla Riesco coal project in Chile's southern Magallanes region for 480 million US dollars.
Construction in Uruguay’s pulp plant has already started and is expected to be up and running in the first quarter of 2013. This would become the second major pulp mill in Uruguay following on Finland’s UPM in Fray Bentos, next to the river Uruguay, which has been in production for three years now.
The first of Minera Isla Riesco's five coal mines is scheduled to begin operating in 2012, according to statements from Mr. Angelini.
Copec will also spend 150 million USD to expand its 550,000 metric ton wood pulp Valdivia plant to 660,000 tons annually, Valor Futuro said.
Copec's Celulosa Arauco y Constitucion SA forestry and pulp subsidiary is one of the world's leading pulp producers. Additionally, the company will invest 110 million USD for a new medium-density particleboard, or MDP, plant and 105 million USD for a plywood plant, both in Chile.
Copec also plans to spend 175 million USD to build a two power generation plants with a combined installed capacity of 66 megawatts.