UPM in Uruguay Investing for Sustainable Future or Colonialism

Activity: Participating in or organising an eventLecture for general public


A conversation on the impacts of a huge pulp mill project in Uruguay. The investment decision of UPM made in July 2019 has sparked a lively debate in Uruguay. Uruguay is a country where not only UPM but also Finland have become important themes of public disputes. The decision to build the pulp mill is the biggest investment both in the history of Uruguay and in the history of UPM. Critical voices are pointing at controversial issues regarding the impacts that the investment has on democracy and national sovereignty, and how UPM as a foreign-owned corporation has colonial aspects. Defenders of the project, such as Uruguay’s leftist government, say it is an opportunity to create employment and enhance the country’s financial standing. There are also questions raised about the environmental and social consequences of the pulp mill and the required eucalyptus tree plantations. Participants: Víctor Baccheta, investigative journalist in Uruguay; Maria Ehrnström-Fuentes, Postdoctoral Researcher at Hanken School of Economics; Markus Kröger, Academy Research Fellow and Associate Professor of Development Studies at University of Helsinki; Jussi Pakkasvirta, Professor of Area Studies and Vice Dean of Humanities at University of Helsinki; Janne Ronkainen, Executive Director of the Trade Union Solidarity Centre of Finland (SASK); Saara Tahvanainen, Vice President, Stakeholder Relations at UPM Biorefining.
Event typeSeminar
LocationHelsinki, FinlandShow on map
Degree of RecognitionNational