One of the largest wood and furniture production groups in the Baltic States, Vakarų Medienos Grupė (VMG) is building a 170 million EUR worth factory of sustainable construction components in the Akmene Free Economic Zone (LEZ).
Company announced about its plans to complete the factory by 2024. In the first development phase, it is planned to invest approximately 94 million euros. By 2025, when the production reaches its full capacity, investments should grow to 170 million euros, 350 new jobs will be created.
“The government commits to use at least 50% of organic materials in the construction of new public buildings from 2024. The choice of construction materials has a significant impact on the energy efficiency and costs, as well as on the environment. Therefore it is important to search and develop the production of healthier materials”, said minister of the environment Simonas Gentvilas. He made a statement after he has met with Vitalijus Mitrofanovas, the mayor of Naujoji Akmenė, Sigitas Paulauskas, the only shareholder of VMG group, company managers, investors, construction and investment specialists.
According to S. Paulauskas, the strategic European Union direction to replace polluting traditional materials with organic ones opens up the potential for the country’s wood industry to become a regional epicenter of production and export of sustainable construction and renovation components.
“11 percent of export consists of the wood industry production, it also contributes a 5 percent of all added values created in the country. Market participants are able and competent to effectively use the opportunities that open up. However, this also requires a consistent state approach. First of all, the legal framework should be adapted for modern sustainable construction and the cooperation of science and innovation sector should be promoted”.S. Paulauskas.
At the beginning of this year, with the funds of the investment fund managed by Braitin, Akmenės LEZ has already started the production of wood chipboard flooring intended for sustainable construction. At the beginning of next year, mass production of laminated overlay panels and connector parts will begin.
By 2024, the entire range of products, required for high-rise sustainable construction and renovation, should be produced in Naujoji Akmenė. The products will be focused on the market of Western Europe and Scandinavian countries.
VMG group, one of the largest chipboard factories in Europe, has been operating in the southern part of the Akmene LEZ territory since 2020. Company has already invested over 150 million eur and created 140 high added value new jobs.
The new VMG cabinet furniture factory – VMG Akmenės baldai – should be officially opened in the same place by the end of this year. Investments in this project will reach about 80 million EUR, up to 600 new jobs will be created.