Japan's FTC Raids Steel Pipe Construction Cos.

Law360, New York (April 19, 2007, 12:00 AM EDT) -- Three Japanese steel companies were raided Thursday by regulators over their suspected involvement in rigging bids for steel gas pipeline construction projects.

JFE Engineering Corp., Nippon Steel Pipeline Co. and Sumitomo Metal Pipeline and Piping Ltd. are suspected of violating Japan’s Antimonopoly Law by rigging bids for high-pressure steel gas pipeline construction works.

The three companies have a stranglehold on the gas pipeline construction business because its complexity and high bar of entry rarely allows other companies to get a foothold.

Steel pipeline construction generates several...
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