SKorea's minor shipbuilding group asks for bailout
Two key units of South Korea's cash-strapped minor shipbuilding group C& have applied for a bank bailout programme to avoid bankruptcy, a key creditor bank said Thursday.
Woori Bank said the group's shipbuilding unit, C& Heavy Industries, and builder C& Woobang Construction asked for a "debt workout" programme from creditors.
The bank said it would soon convene a meeting of creditors.
If the programme is approved, the two units would see their debts reschedulled or rolled over in return for restructuring.
"We have applied for a debt workout programme due to financial woes," a group spokesman told AFP, declining to give details.
The group has 27 units, focusing on shipbuilding, construction, manufacturing and leisure.
Total exposure by lenders to the group stands at about 1.3 trillion won (880 million dollars), including 227.4 billion won in loans extended by Woori, Yonhap news agency said.
South Korea, home to seven of the world's top 10 shipyards, has secured record orders in recent years.
But the global financial crisis and a sharp decline in new orders have eroded their profitability with smaller shipyards facing a severe credit crunch.