The Korea Offshore & Shipbuilding Association (KOSHIPA) today released a statement calling on domestic steel producers to keep the prices of shipbuilding plates at current levels to give more breathing space for the ailing domestic shipyards.
KOSHIPA believes any price hike of shipbuilding plates would threaten the survival of domestic yards as the shipbuilders are facing declining sales volumes and worsening profitability, which could result one of the worst annual performances iever.
According to KOSHIPA, the thick steel plate prices increased by around KRW5,000 ($44) per ton in the first half of this year and if the price hike continues in the second half, it would cost the domestic shipbuilders additional KRW300bn ($266m) in manufacturing costs.
The Korean shipbuilders are suffering in recent years due to sharp decline in new orders and fierce competition from Chinese rival yards. Last month, Hyundai Heavy Industries, one of the country’s major yards, decided to suspend operations at its offshore facility.