Mining News Pro - According to the latest reports, South Korea’s FTC (Fair Trade Commission) has slapped a record fine of combined 119.4 billion won (USD 105.9 million) on six rebar suppliers including majors Hyundai Steel Co. and Dongkuk Steel Mill Co, for price fixing between 2015 and 2016.
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According to Mining News Pro -According to the latest reports, South Korea’s FTC (Fair Trade Commission) has slapped a record fine of combined 119.4 billion won (USD 105.9 million) on six rebar suppliers including majors Hyundai Steel Co. and Dongkuk Steel Mill Co, for price fixing between 2015 and 2016.

FTC which is country’s antitrust watchdog has found out that the country’s six leading reinforced steel makers - Hyundai Steel, Dongkuk Steel Mill, KISCO, YK Steel Corp., Hwan Young Steel Ind. Co., and Daehan Steel Co. - had conspired to cap discount rates on steel bar prices in order to sell them at higher prices over 12 occasions between May 2015 and December 2016.

While FTC has fined six companies with a total amount of 119.4 billion won which is the highest levy in the industry since 1990, it has also charged criminal charges on five companies excluding YK Steel.

Company wise Hyundai Steel is slapped with the largest penalty of 41.8 billion won (USD 6.08 billion), followed by Dongkuk Steel Mill with 30.2 billion won (4.39 billion), KISCO with 17.5 billion won (USD 2.55 billion), YK Steel with 11.3 billion won (USD 1.64 million), Hwan Young Steel Ind with 11.3 billion won (USD 1.64 billion), and Daehan Steel with 7.3 billion won (USD 1.06 million).

FTC has said that these six companies together account for 82% of South Korea’s reinforced steel market thus suggesting that their price-rigging would have played a crucial role in determining wholesale prices in country’s market. According to its finding, the six steel makers plotted on setting discount rates on steel bar prices to prevent a steep fall in prices against the flood of cheap Chinese imports and softening in prices of scrap metals a key raw material for steel bars.

The top-tier rebar prices in South Korea are usually set through negotiation between industry leaders Hyundai Steel and Dongkuk Steel and builders. Smaller players try to sell at a lower price to win orders.


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