Paper Excellence returns $4.5M to province after indefinitely curtailing Crofton mill

Paper Excellence returns $4.5M to province after indefinitely curtailing Crofton mill
File photo.

Paper Excellence Canada is returning $4.5 million to the B.C. government after the company announced that it would be indefinitely curtailing its paper operations at its mill in Crofton, north of Duncan.

The company is on the hook for the money because the provincial government had previously given Paper Excellence millions of dollars to help re-tool some of its equipment at the mill to make new products.

After the company announced it was curtailing its paper operations at the Catalyst Crofton facility indefinitely, the province went looking for its money back since Paper Excellence broke the terms and conditions of the contribution agreement. At the time, Paper Excellence promised it would return the funding.

“We are disappointed the project could not proceed, but pleased the terms of the contract were adhered to,” said the province in a statement Thursday.

The indefinite curtailment left 75 workers at the Catalyst Crofton mill out of work.

When the curtailment was announced on Jan. 25, B.C. Jobs Minister Brenda Bailey told CHEK News she was saddened to hear of the indefinite closure, adding that her father worked at the site while she was growing up in Nanaimo.

“I’m disappointed,” said Bailey at the time. “I’m really thinking about the workers that have been impacted.”

Similar shut downs and temporary curtailments have affected the mill since October 2022, though parts of its operations, like its pulp production, are still underway.

With files from CHEK’s Rob Shaw


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