Nippon Steel Ordered to Compensate Wartime Korean Laborers

Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp. was ordered yesterday by the Seoul High Court to pay compensation to Korean workers for forced labor during Japan’s colonial rule of the peninsula.

The Tokyo-based steelmaker was ordered by the court to pay 100 million won ($88,000) to each of the four workers who filed for compensation, Nippon Steel spokesman Masato Suzuki said by telephone today.

The decision is “regrettable,” Suzuki said. Nippon Steel plans to appeal to South Korea’s Supreme Court, he said.

All issues related to the claims have been settled as part as part of a 1965 treaty that normalized relations between Japan and South Korea, Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said in a regular media briefing yesterday. The government will discuss with Nippon Steel for an appropriate response, he said.

The ruling was reported yesterday by the Financial Times.

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