The Finnish Paperworkers’ Union issued a new strike announcement to UPM yesterday (20 January), stating that its strike at UPM’s Finnish mills will be extended to 19 February unless new agreements are reached beforehand.
The Paperworkers’ Union’s strike at the UPM Pulp, UPM Biofuels, UPM Communication Papers, UPM Specialty Papers, and UPM Raflatac units in Finland started on 1 January and had already been extended before on 5 January.
UPM said its goal continues to be to start business specific negotiations with the union as soon as possible.
“Only in the negotiations will it be possible to open up the goals of the parties and seek solutions together. Our businesses are very different from each other, which is why business-specific agreements are essential to us,” said Jyrki Hollmén, vice president of labour markets at UPM.
“Our focus is not on next month or next year, but on pursuing agreements that will enable each business to succeed well into the future. Business success also benefits our employees.
“By agreeing on a business-by-business basis, also the needs of local personnel can be taken into account. We want to be a fair and attractive employer in the future as well, which means, among other things, maintaining a good level of annual salaries.
“I believe that it is possible for us to find agreements for each business that all parties can be satisfied with.”
UPM said it will service its customers from its mills outside Finland “to the extent possible”.
At this point, UPM has not disclosed estimates of the economic impacts of the strikes. The company’s share price steadily climbed during January, reaching a 52-week-high of €35.68 (£29.82) yesterday. It was back down to €34.49, however, at the time of writing.