Fresh proposals submitted over UPM strike

Communication Papers: biggest unit lost money last year
Communication Papers: biggest unit lost money last year

There’s a glimmer of hope that agreement could be reached in the long-running strike action that has shuttered UPM’s Finnish paper mills.

Today (21 April), UPM announced that mediator Leo Suomaa had submitted settlement proposals for all five businesses involved with collective bargaining between UPM and the Paperworkers’ Union. 

This included a proposal for UPM Communication Papers, which was left out of the earlier proposals submitted, which resulted in the union rejecting any further progress on all of the potential deals.

The other proposals cover UPM Pulp, UPM Specialty Papers, UPM Raflatac and UPM Biofuels.

Riitta Savonlahti, executive vice president for human resources at UPM, said: “I hope that the conciliation proposals now given will lead to agreements and we get to start the mills. Prolonging the strike further would not be in anyone's interest.” 

The strike action has now passed 110 days and is causing huge issues across European printing industry supply chains. 

Suomaa has given UPM and the union a short deadline to state their position on the proposals, with responses required tomorrow, Friday 22 April, at 16:00 EEST (2pm UK time).

The Paper Association said it would not make any public comment on the settlement proposal before giving its answer.

Earlier this month the strike action was extended for the seventh time, and is currently set to run until 14 May.