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Quality of Chinese steel used in New Zealand skyscraper questioned

Steel News - Published on Thu, 24 May 2018

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Radio NZ reported that a steel quality expert is questioning whether the rules are tight enough around thousands of tonnes of Chinese steel going into the country's tallest residential skyscraper. Seascape Apartments on Customs Street, at 52 storeys and 187 metres high, is being built by a Chinese contractor, using structural steel manufactured in China. Australasian Certification Authority for Reinforcing and Structural Steels executive director Mr Philip Sanders said problems with tainted steel supply worldwide meant his organisation was not coy about asking questions about the steel supply for the Auckland project.

Mr Sanders said that "It really needs to be [an] independent party that sets the test plan ... for international best practice it should not be under the auspices or control of the [steel] supplier. Substandard supply control was suspected to be the cause of scrapping 1600 tonnes of substandard Chinese steel meant for a Waikato highway in 2016.”

At Seascape Apartments, supplier JingGong Steel is in charge of the inspection regime, alongside the main contractor, China State Construction.

While some in the industry play down ACRS authority and have suggested it was used to protect Australian steelmakers from Asian competition, the certification was the first thing Auckland Council looked at in its new rules.

The Building Code allows for multiple ways to get approval. Whichever way is taken, council independent oversight will apply to JingGong and Seascape.

A council spokesperson said finished steel samples would be sent to a variety of testing providers, including some in New Zealand.

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Posted By : Nanda Koijam on Thu, 24 May 2018
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