Monday, March 20, 2000

Korean ship dumping complaint headed for WTO
South Korea is getting set for its dispute with the EU on shipbuilding subsidies to go to the World Trade Organization for resolution. A Korea-EU working group meeting in Brussels last week ended without resolution. Now the Chosun Ilbo reports South Korea's Minister for Trade, Han Duck-soo, as saying that the substantial gap between Korea and the European Union on the issues will make it necessary to seek WTO)
arbitration. Han told reporters that Korean officials are doing their best to resolve pending issues through amicable negotiations, but at the same time, the government is making a parallel move to prepare for WTO mediation.

Han reportedly takes the position that the Korean government has never funded any subsidies for the shipbuilding industry and that Seoul will not accept EU demands that Korean shipbuilders scale down their global market share.

Kvaerner sells Russian yard
Kvaerner today announced that it has entered into an agreement with ZAO AKO BARSS, for the sale of its 75.6 per cent shareholding in Kvaerner Vyborg Shipyard JSC, Russia, close to the Finnish border. AKO BARSS is a St Petersburg-based shipbuilding and ship-repair company. Completion of the transaction is expected to take place in approximately four weeks.
Vyborg is the seventh shipyard to be sold as part of Kvaerner's April 1999 restructuring plan. The transaction will produce a small accounting loss for Kvaerner, within the scope of the provision made in the 1999 accounts.

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