Finland's Stora Enso completes exit from Russia

Credit: REUTERS/Ints Kalnins

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HELSINKI, May 16 (Reuters) - Finland's Stora Enso STERV.HE has divested the last of its Russian operations, three corrugated packaging plants, to local management, the forestry firm said on Monday.

"We have sold all our operations in Russia," a company spokeswoman told Reuters, adding the divestment was pending regulatory approvals by local authorities.

On March 2, Stora Enso announced it would stop all production and sales in Russia, condemning Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

Prior to what Moscow calls "a special operation" in Ukraine, Stora Enso employed around 1,100 people in Russia and its Russian sales accounted for approximately 3% of the group's total sales.

At the end of April, Stora said it had entered into an agreement to sell its two sawmills and their forest operations in Russia to local management, causing it to record a 130 million euro loss.

On Monday, Stora Enso said local ownership and operation would "provide a more sustainable long-term solution" for its three corrugated packaging plants and their employees in Lukhovitsy, Arzamas and Balabanovo, due to the uncertainties in the Russian market.

The company decline to reveal the financial value of the transaction, but said it would record an additional loss of 55 million euros ($57 million) for it, having already recorded an impairment of 35 million euros in the first quarter.

($1 = 0.9618 euros)

(Reporting by Anne Kauranen; editing by Edmund Blair and Jason Neely)

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