On 28 April 2021, the Council on Ethics recommended that Hyundai Engineering & Construction Co Ltd (HDEC) be placed under observation due to an unacceptable risk that the company is contributing to or is itself responsible for gross corruption.
HDEC is one of the largest construction companies in South Korea. It engages in the construction of ports and freight terminals, bridges and motorways, dams, nuclear power and other power generating facilities, petrochemical plants, apartment buildings, etc. The Council’s investigations have shown that HDEC, by itself or through subsidiaries, can be linked to allegations or suspicions of corruption in three countries in the period 2008–2018. In addition, HDEC was involved in 13 bid-rigging cases in the period 2005–2013. The Council considers that HDEC’s handling of the various allegations shows it has treated them too lightly. The Council’s review of HDEC’s systems and procedures for the prevention and detection of corruption also gives the impression that much remains to be done with regard to their development and implementation.
On 1 July 2021, Norges Bank announced its decision to place HDEC under observation for a period of four years.