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Kobe Steel sent products with tampered data to second nuclear company via Reuters

TOKYO (Reuters) – Kobe Steel Ltd supplied parts with false specifications for nuclear equipment owned by Japan Nuclear Fuel Ltd (JNFL), JNFL said on Friday, adding that the products were not used.

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Japan’s atomic regulator has asked nuclear operators to check whether they are using Kobe Steel products at nuclear plants, it said on Wednesday, adding it had received no reports that Kobe Steel’s data tampering scandal had affected safety.

No deadline has been given for nuclear operators to report back to the Nuclear Regulation Authority, a spokesman said by phone on Friday.

The unfolding data tampering scandal has spread from Kobe Steel’s copper and aluminum business to most areas of the company and sent companies at the end of complex supply chains across the world scrambling to check whether the safety or performance of their products has been compromised.

While no safety issues have been identified, Japan’s third-largest steelmaker is likely to face claims for replacement parts and other costs.

Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd would ask Kobe Steel to cover any costs for replacement of parts or other expenses related to the data tampering, President Yoshinori Kanehana told reporters on Friday at an earnings briefing.

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The alliance involves cooperating on steel supplies during shortages or maintenance of factories, while Nippon Steel has a 2.95 percent stake in Kobe Steel, with the latter holding 0.71 percent of its bigger rival’s shares.

Kobe Steel said on Thursday 88 out of 525 affected customers had yet to confirm its products were safe in the light of widespread tampering of specifications, but that it had not received any requests for recalls.

Japan’s third-largest steelmaker supplies manufacturers of cars, planes, trains and other products across the world and the data tampering has spiraled into one of Japan’s biggest industrial scandals.

Read more at Kobe Steel sent products with tampered data to second nuclear company

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