GS Engineering and Construction confirmed it unknowingly used forged, untested Chinese glass on a luxury apartment complex built in Seoul several years ago. Photo: Unsplash

A South Korean-based construction company confirmed that it unknowingly used forged, untested Chinese glass on a luxury apartment complex built in Seoul several years ago.

GS Engineering and Construction (GS E&C) verified it used thousands of Chinese glass lites with forged Korean Standard (KS) certification marks on the project. The KS mark is a statutory and voluntary certification for products that meet industrial standards.

The glass was installed in the complex’s units, banquet halls, sky lounges and rooftops. Korean officials say the installations required tempered glass, but the counterfeit Chinese-made products were not tested to meet performance criteria. Apartment officials have warned residents to avoid areas where the glass is installed.

A GS E&C spokesperson says a subcontractor supplied around 2,000 sheets with forged KS marks. Media reports indicate that T Glass imported the lites and applied the forged KS mark to meet delivery dates. T Glass is said to have delivered the counterfeit products mixed with 1,500 pieces of genuine glass.

GS E&C officials say the glass will be replaced, but no timeline has been given. They explain that GS E&C plans to “investigate the related materials further and take action based on the results.” Media reports indicate that the fake KS mark differed considerably from the official mark, raising questions about why management and supervisors failed to notice the discrepancies.

The controversy came to light when a company that lost the project bid to supply the glass tracked down the winner. After evidence of fake glass was obtained, a police report was filed.

Korean law enforcement authorities recently punished the supplier and importer of the counterfeit glass. GS E&C plans to file a complaint against the subcontractors who carried out the construction. It will also seek damages.

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