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Audi Korea says payment of tax refunds to Korean customers under way

All Headlines 12:05 April 01, 2016

SEOUL, April 1 (Yonhap) -- The local unit of Audi, the luxury brand of German carmaker Volkswagen, said Friday that it is in the process of paying tax refunds to its customers, dismissing criticism over its alleged refusal to follow the government's changed tax policy, which recently led to some lawsuits demanding compensation.

In its emailed statement, Audi Korea said that it has notified all of its dealerships here about the government's decision to extend a tax cut for new car purchases and that they are paying refunds to their customers accordingly.

"Audi Korea is currently paying tax refunds not in the form of adjustment of vehicle prices but in the form of paying money reflecting the lowered tax rate after a car purchase," the company said.

Audi Korea added that it is "actively cooperating" with the government on its tax policy, while working hard to clearly figure out things related to the recently filed suits against the auto company.

The clarification came after some customers recently filed lawsuits against Audi, demanding they be compensated for its alleged decision not to pay refunds in line with the government's tax cut extension decision made in early February.

The government ended a 1.5 percentage-point excise tax cut on new car purchases at the end of last year. Once it expired, car sales dropped, which promoted the government to extend the consumption-boosting measure until June.

The reduced tax rate should be applied retroactively to cars bought in January and major Korean carmakers have started to pay tax refunds.

Some foreign brands, however, are refusing to follow suit, claiming that the tax cut was already reflected in their aggressive promotional events and claimed that they informed their customers of such facts, an argument that some customers have said they cannot buy.

kokobj@yna.co.kr
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