Colombia is to get its first MDF production line with the decision of local panel producer Tablemac SA to invest around US$30m to build a new fibreboard plant.

The company, one of two national prod ucers of particleboard and furniture components, has announced it will install a 132,000m3/year line at the new facility. Expansion of its product portfolio will allow the panel maker to target a domestic MDF market it estimates will total 101,000m3/year at the end of 2009.

Growing Colombian demand for MDF is currently fed from abroad, largely by the region’s top producer Masisa from its continuous line in Venezuela and by Ecuadorian suppliers.

The company said it will fund the project from a combination of its own resources and “long-term financing’’.