The Chinese company Shandong Sun Paper announced last week that work would go ahead on a $1bn paper mill in southern Arkansas.
The mill will be used to process wood into “fluff pulp”, a material required to make sanitary products such as diapers.
The project was put on track in November last year, when Sun Paper Chairman Li Hongxin (pictured) signed a memorandum of understanding with Arkansas officials at a ceremony in the northeastern Chinese city of Jinan, which was attended by Penny Pritzker, the US Commerce Secretary, and Asa Hutchinson, the governor of Arkansas.
At that time its value was put at $1.4bn, making it the largest ever industrial investment in the state. It is not the largest Chinese paper investment in the US, however. In 2014, Shandong Tranlin Paper invested $2bn in a paper and fertilizer plant in Virginia.