Thirty-five Japanese timber traders attended the official inauguration of Stora Enso Timber’s glulam beam mill in Imavere, Estonia last week.

The Japanese, who represent some of the company’s biggest customers, also visited the Ybbs post mill in Austria and took part in a business review seminar in Tallinn during their visit to Europe.

The Imavere sawmill includes planing and stress-grading facilities for refining the lamella raw material which is then glulam into beams.

Trial production started in March and the mill is currently working two shifts. Full capacity of 80,000m3 will be reached in 2006.

The mill is dedicated to the Japanese market and the company’s strategy is to become a full assortment supplier to Japan’s traditional housing market.

The €12m investment in the beam mill has seen the workforce rise from 75 to 308. As well as the new beam mill, the Imavere site has a large scale sawmill and component mill.

Total annual log consumption will be around 780,000m3.