Gunns is in the final stages of securing the equity portion of the $2.5 billion Bell Bay pulp mill, according to boss Greg L'Estrange, but a satisfactory ending to the Tasmanian Forest Agreement saga is critical.
Gunns is also expected to tell the government today whether it will accept the compensation, believed to be $23 million and slightly less than Gunns was seeking, for handing back its native forest logging contracts in Tasmania, The Australian Financial Review reports.
Gunns spent $88.4 million in the 2011 financial year to end logging of native forests, up from $66.8 million the year before. It stands to receive a fraction of the $200 million valuation of the contracts 12 months ago.
"We have been running a process for a long time and we are in the final stages of that competitive process," Mr L'Estrange said.
A final decision on any pulp mill partner depended on a satisfactory outcome to the Tasmanian Forest Agreement, he said.