Metso Paper, Inc., Metso Automation, Inc. and Sumitomo Heavy Industries, Ltd. have agreed to form a joint venture company to enhance the product offering and service to the Japanese pulp and paper industry especially in modernisation and rebuilds. The JV will commence its operations in October 2003. Located in Tokyo, the JV will employ some 40 process and machinery experts from current Metso and SHI organisations. It will source its machinery from Metso Corporation globally and Sumitomo Heavy Industries’ Techno Fort in Japan. With annual paper and board consumption of 250 kg/capita, Japan is among the largest paper and board consumers in the world.