Uruguayan plywood manufacturer Lumin invests US$136m in new plywood mill

Image: Lumin

Lumin, a timberland and forest products company based in Uruguay, will invest approximately US$136m to build its third industrial plant in Uruguay, which is expected to create more than 300 jobs and increase the country’s sustainable plywood production.

Following approval by Lumin’s board of directors, which includes representatives of the BTG Pactual Timberland Investment Group (TIG) and British Columbia Investment Management Corporation (BCI), construction of the new plant will begin in Q1 2023, with operations expected to commence in Q1 2026.

The expansion is part of Lumin’s strategy to capitalise on the growing global demand for sustainable timber products for the construction and furniture sectors.

Currently, all of Lumin’s 120,000 hectares of commercial forests are independently certified as meeting the global standards for responsible forest management of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC).

This new investment complements investments of $48m made over the last two years into the company’s existing facilities, which includes the construction of a thin peel line and a new warehouse facility.

Álvaro Molinari, Lumin’s CEO, said: “Lumin currently employs 780 people and produces 304,000m3 of plywood per year at its two existing plants in Tacuarembó city. We expect this new plant to create 320 additional jobs and to expand Lumin’s production capacity to nearly 500,000m3.

“Based on current figures, this would make Uruguay the second largest producer of plywood in Latin America.”

The new plant aims to capitalise on tree farms that Lumin has been sustainably managing for more than 15 years in the departments of Cerro Largo and Treinta y Tres.