Media Releases


260 JOBS FOR NORTHERNERS

December 27, 2001

Crown Investments Corporation (CIC) has entered into a partnership with Tolko Industries Ltd. to build a $220 million Oriented Strand Board (OSB) mill near Meadow Lake. The project will create more than 260 jobs for northerners and help develop Saskatchewan's forestry industry.

"We are pleased to have signed the partnership agreement for this project which we announced in principle in June," CIC Minister Maynard Sonntag said. "Under terms of the agreement, Tolko will own 75 per cent of the mill and will build and operate the plant. CIC will own the remaining 25 per cent, and will invest $27.5 million and provide a loan guarantee of $27.5 million."

When completed, the mill will employ 130 people. There will be another 130 jobs created in spin-off areas like harvesting and trucking, and 200 person- years of employment during construction.

The mill will be capable of producing 600 million square feet of 3/8" OSB annually. It will initially produce sheathing products for the North American market, before moving on to more high performance, engineered product lines such as flooring and stair tread.

"There's growing demand for high quality OSB products, especially in North America, so we expect this mill to provide a good return on our investment over time," Sonntag said. "This project is also consistent with our Forestry Development Strategy, which calls for sustainable economic development through wise use of our timber resource."

Tolko Industries Ltd. is a private forestry company headquartered in Vernon, BC. It has lumber, plywood, OSB and pulp and paper operations. Construction on the Meadow Lake OSB mill is expected to begin in the spring of 2002 and be completed in about 18 months.

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For more information, contact:

Ted Boyle
Crown Investments Corporation
Regina
Phone: (306) 787-9039