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South Korean court allows seizure of Nippon Steel assets

A South Korean court granted a request to seize the Korean assets of Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp. over Japan's wartime forced labor, Yonhap News Agency reported Jan. 8.

Lawyers representing South Korean plaintiffs asked the court to seize 81,075 shares of the POSCO-Nippon Steel RHF Joint Venture between Nippon Steel and POSCO, the report said.

The Japanese steelmaker is estimated to own about 2.34 million shares of the joint venture, valued at about 11 billion South Korean won.

In response, Nippon Steel plans to continue consultations with the Japanese government over the court decision, the report said, citing Japanese broadcaster NHK.

The court decision comes after the Japanese steelmaker refused to follow an October 2018 ruling by South Korea's top court that ordered the company to pay four Koreans 100 million won each in compensation for damages during Japan's colonial rule.

As of Jan. 7, US$1 was equivalent to 1,118.69 South Korean won.