31 conglomerates under scrutiny for heavy debts
[THE INVESTOR] Korea’s financial regulator said on May 14 it has placed 31 highly-indebted conglomerates under closer watch for debt reductions in order to prevent unexpected defaults.
According to the Financial Supervisory Service, the conglomerates that owe more than 1.5 trillion won (US$1.40 billion) to local banks have been designated heavy corporate debtors this year. This compares with 36 such firms last year.
The FSS unveils a list of major highly indebted large firms in May every year.
Sungdong Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering, E-Land, Halla and two others were dropped from the list as they sold off affiliates and paid off debts amid restructuring.
The outstanding amount of the 31 firms’ combined loans totaled 240.6 trillion won as of the end of 2017, down 11.2 percent from 282.3 trillion won a year earlier.
The FSS said it will closely scrutinize the firms’ financial health until the end of May and monitor their restructuring efforts throughout the year.
By Song Seung-hyun and newswires (firstname.lastname@example.org)