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S. Korea sets up task force to support typhoon-hit steel industry

This photo, provided by POSCO, shows a worker checking the production of steel products at the No. 3 blast furnace at its major steel mill in Pohang, North Gyeongsang Province, on Tuesday, as the company resumed its operation after a weeklong suspension due to Typhoon Hinnamnor. (POSCO)
This photo, provided by POSCO, shows a worker checking the production of steel products at the No. 3 blast furnace at its major steel mill in Pohang, North Gyeongsang Province, on Tuesday, as the company resumed its operation after a weeklong suspension due to Typhoon Hinnamnor. (POSCO)

The industry ministry said Wednesday it will run a task force to support steelmakers with post-typhoon recovery work and to check the supply situation of steel products to minimize damage by Typhoon Hinnamnor.

Last week, Typhoon Hinnamnor hit the southern part of South Korea and affected steelmaking facilities run by major companies, including POSCO and Hyundai Steel. POSCO had halted blast furnaces at its main steel mill in Pohang for the first time in its half-century history.

The task force will hold its first meeting later in the day with the steelmakers, their association and state-run trade entities to share the extent of damage and the current situation, and assess their impacts on exports and other related sectors, according to the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy.

The government will also set up a joint team with experts to exactly figure out the market circumstances and come up with supportive measures, it added.

"We will do our best to forecast the exact timing of the full production recovery so as to ensure stable supply chains of the key industry item," the ministry said in a release.

POSCO restarted all of its three typhoon-hit blast furnaces in Pohang on Tuesday after a weeklong shutdown, but some rolling and other facilities have still been halted.

Hyundai Steel also saw some of its facilities at the Pohang factory damaged by the flooding. (Yonhap)

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