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S. Korea's 39 conglomerates face evaluation in financial health

All News 16:35 April 12, 2016

SEOUL, April 12 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's 39 conglomerates will undergo a financial evaluation by their creditor banks by May, which may result in restructuring programs in some of them depending on the results, the financial regulator said Tuesday.

The Financial Supervisory Service (FSS) has selected 39 heavy-indebted conglomerates as the "main debtor groups" for 2016 based on their debt levels at the end of 2015, the FSS said in a statement.

As of the end of December, the selected groups each held more than 1.358 trillion won (US$1.2 billion) in group-wide debt.

According to the current regulations, companies in 2015 that carried a debt of more than 0.075 percent of the overall debts extended by the country's lenders in the previous year to individuals and businesses were enlisted into the main debtor groups. The figure of 1.358 trillion won is equivalent to 0.075 percent of the nation's total debts worth 1,810.9 trillion won rolled over in 2014, an FSS official explained.

"The main creditor banks will complete the evaluation of the selected groups' financial stability by May and sign a restructuring and turnaround deal with financially-troubled ones," he said.

The creditor banks include the state-run Korea Development Bank, Woori Bank, KEB Hana Bank, Shinhan Bank and KB Kookmin Bank.

This year, Homeplus Co., Kumho Petrochemical and Taeyoung Engineering & Construction were newly added to the debtor group, which also includes Samsung Electronics Co., Hyundai Motor Co., SK Group, Hyundai Heavy Industries Co., POSCO and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co., the statement said.

Groups such as Hyundai Development Co., Dongbu Group and Poongsan Corp. exited from the 39-member list after they repaid some of debts last year, it said.


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