Outlook for 2020
The new hardwood sawmill will begin operations in 2020. Further improvements in production workflows and a cost reduction program will also be implemented. The yield is to be increased at roughly the same harvest volume, leading to further sales growth. In the veneer plant, we expect an increase of 3 % in production. Sales growth in 2020 will be between 7 % and 9 %. Margins will improve significantly again if no unexpected events lead to setbacks or delivery delays. At the beginning of 2018, we carried out preparatory work to advance the project of a biomass power plant in Bambidie. However, as the new forestry law has not yet been adopted, we will leave it at preparatory work for now and only invest in it once there is legal clarity. In parallel, we are currently evaluating possibilities to use and process residual wood, given that not the entire volume of biomass can be expected to be useable for electricity production even once a power plant is installed.
We are also investigating additional concession areas with the intention of managing them sustainably and supplying the logs to the market. The demand for logs on the domestic market has risen massively because a number of companies have settled in a specially established industrial zone in Libreville for the first transformation (processing stage).