The megamerger of South Korea’s two big shipbuilders faces new headwinds, with European regulators set to follow their counterparts in Singapore in launching an antitrust investigation.
The European Commission, the European Union’s executive arm, will launch an antitrust review of the planned combination of debt-ridden Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME), which would control 20% of the world’s market for oceangoing vessels, a senior Commission official said.
“There are monopoly alarm bells all over this deal,” the official said. “The probe is set to launch this month and could take up to six months.”
The Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore announced last week that the HHI-DSME marriage “will remove competition” among major shipbuilding nations and hurt its own yards.
Seoul announced the merger of its two big shipyards, linchpins of a transportation sector central to the country’s economy, in January, but the tie-up is subject to regulatory approvals from Japan, Singapore, China, Kazakhstan, and the EU.
Full Content: Wall Street Journal
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