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Weyerhaeuser to Close Longview, Wash., Fine Paper Operations

Thursday, November 13, 2003

Press release from the issuing company

FEDERAL WAY, Wash.--Nov. 12, 2003-- Weyerhaeuser Company today announced it will permanently close its No. 1 Fine Paper machine and related operations in Longview, Wash., effective Nov. 26. The company will take a $17 million after-tax charge, or 8 cents per share, in the fourth quarter for costs associated with the closure. Approximately 119 positions will be eliminated because of the shutdown. The paper machine, which has a capacity of 90,000 tons-per-year, is 47 years old. The company will provide the affected employees with severance pay and continuation of health care benefits, as well as job-transition services and counseling, in accordance with company policy and applicable union agreements. The facility, which produces printing papers, had been scheduled for downtime to balance production with customer demand. The company closed Longview's No. 2 Fine Paper machine in 2001 because of poor markets. Although the company will cease producing fine paper in Longview, 1,700 employees will continue to be employed in Longview in the company's pulp and bleached paperboard, newsprint, lumber and timberlands operations. Weyerhaeuser also owns and manages 440,000 acres of forests at its St. Helens Tree Farm in Cowlitz County. Michael A. Jackson, Weyerhaeuser's Fine Paper business vice president said this decision was part of the company's overall strategy to become more competitive. "The closure of the machine was a difficult decision, made necessary by the age of this machine," Jackson said. "We thank the talented, skilled people who work at the Longview paper operation. We'll work hard to help them through this difficult transition." Weyerhaeuser continues to employ approximately 8,000 people in Washington in a variety of businesses and manages about 1.2 million acres of timberland in the state.

 

 

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