The Finnish company Green Fuel Nordic Ltd has successfully closed a EUR 24 million financing package for the construction of a biorefinery plant in Lieksa, located in the North Karelia region of Eastern Finland. The package includes a loan for EUR 10 million arranged by Osuuspankki together with the European Investment Bank and Finnvera, a grant of EUR 7 million from the ELY Centre, South Savonia and EUR 7 million investment from three private investors in Eastern Finland.
With the environmental impact assessment process completed, the construction of the new bio plant will proceed as planned in Lieksa's Kevätniemi industrial area. The location is close to wood biomass sources and enables synergies with the existing bio cluster actors in the area. Production is expected to start in 2019.
According to Green Fuel Nordic, the plant will utilize commercially proven technology for the production of second-generation bio-oil from local, renewable, forest-based biomass. Bio-oil can be used directly in industrial and municipal electricity and heat production, replacing light and heavy fuel oil.
"The Green Fuel Nordic – Lieksa biorefinery project aligns with the Finnish government's ambitious climate and energy targets. Local investment in renewable fuel based on the sustainable use of local forest biomass is of regional economic importance and serves as a good example of the emerging bio-economy," says Kimmo Tiilikainen, Minister of the Environment, Energy and Housing.
GFN Lieksa's parent company Green Fuel Nordic Ltd is planning to build additional biorefineries in Finland. Finland is a global leader in the utilization of wood-based biomass for energy production, reflecting its leadership position in the forest sector and extensive investments in bioenergy R&D&I since the 1980s.
"The confidence shown by Finnish investors in the Lieksa biorefinery project is also an important signal for foreign investors interested in the opportunities created by Finland's growing bio-economy, including the construction of more biorefineries in the future," says Helvi Väisänen, Senior Advisor, Invest in Finland, Business Finland.
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