Steel group Corus has hit certain UK customers with more price rises as it passed on the impact of continued cost increases during 2005. The company's strip products division, which accounts for some 40% of sales worldwide, will increase prices in the UK on a range of products, including hot-rolled strip steels and hot-dipped galvanised steel, from January 1. The increase, which follows strip price rises in three of the last four quarters, is likely to affect customers in sectors including construction, engineering and automotive. The latest hike is an average of pounds 15 per tonne, although Corus, has not revealed how much this takes the price to. A Corus spokeswoman said: "UK demand for strip is steadily improving and stock levels throughout our major supply chains are well in balance. "Moreover, given the continued cost increases incurred in 2005, Corus Strip Products UK feels the need to recover these increases."