Boeing Passenger Jets Have Falsely-Certified Kobe Steel Products

Lloyd Doyle
October 13, 2017

The chief executive of Kobe Steel Ltd. warned on Thursday that there may be further cases of falsified data than have been previously disclosed, in a widening scandal over its inspection data that has affected hundreds of companies.

On October 8, 2017, Kobe Steel acknowledged falsifying data about the quality of its aluminum, copper and steel it sold to customers.

The affected products include steel wires used in auto engines and tyres - a key company product - as well as aluminium found in Japan's bullet trains as well as materials in high-speed trains in Britain, although it is not clear whether the scandal hit product safety. Akihiro Tada, director of the ministry's Manufacturing Industries Bureau, urged the company to move quickly in resolving the problems, which are thought to have affected numerous country's largest manufacturers.

Beyond automakers and trains, Kobe Steel has also been implicated in fabricating data for aerospace and defense-related products.

Central Japan Railway, which operates high speed trains between Tokyo and Osaka, found aluminum parts used in the truck - the part that connects the wheels to train cars - failed to meet company standards, said spokesman Atsuo Utano.

As a result of this news, the price of Kobe Steel shares declined by approximately 40% throughout the next two trading days.

Toyota, Nissan, Subaru, and Mazda have all confirmed that they are customers of the metal producer and are now working to find out which vehicles are affected.

Kobe Steel said the falsification of quality data "has brought overwhelming shame to the company".

But Japan's leading Nikkei business daily reported Friday that those products were also used in planes built by Boeing and Airbus and vehicles made by General Motors, Tesla, and Daimler.

"Putting the utmost priority on the safety of our customers, we are rapidly working to identify which vehicle models might be subject to this situation and what components were used, as well as what effect there might be on individual vehicles", Toyota said in a statement. Product quality scandals have posed a challenge to the image of top Japan's manufacturers in recent years. Major automakers are also engaged in massive recalls and facing criticism for allegedly continuing to use the defective air bags despite knowing of the problem.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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