Market Watch reported that Mr Akio Mimura chairman of Nippon Steel warned that the creation of resources oligopolies was a threat to the continued growth of trade between Australia and Japan. Mr Mimura called on the fair trade authorities to strongly crack down against behavior implying towards excessive oligopoly with a view to maintaining an open and competitive market in resources trade.
He didn't name individual companies, though his comments may reflect concerns about the impending joint venture between Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton Limited over their Pilbara iron ore production. He noted that the biggest steel maker, ArcelorMittal, produces about 10% of global steel while Nippon Steel is at 3%. He added that "In contrast, on the iron ore supplier side, we are looking at three companies, so that we have effectively a monopoly."