S.Korea to extend 20% oil tax cut by 3 months -finance minister – Reuters

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SEOUL, March 4 (Reuters) – South Korea’s Finance minister, Hong Nam-ki, said on Friday the country will extend the tax cut in oil products by three months to minimise the impact of surging energy prices, pushed up by the Russia-Ukraine crisis.

The tax cut was scheduled to end late in April after the government slashed domestic tax by 20% on key oil products such as gasoline, diesel fuel and liquefied petroleum gas.

The 0% tariff for liquefied natural gas will also be extended to end of July.

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Hong added the finance ministry is reviewing whether to increase the rate of tax cuts should oil prices soar at a faster pace and intensify economic uncertainties.

Consumer inflation in the Asian economy stood at 3.7% in February, hovering near a decade high, data on Friday showed, as a continued rise in food and energy prices pushed prices higher. read more

Amid worries that the Ukraine crisis may weigh on the chip industry, the finance ministry also said on Friday it is reviewing whether to apply a quota tariff on key items such as neon and krypton. The decision will come later in March.

Ukraine and Russia are important sources of noble gases and precious metals used in chipmaking, which include neon, krypton and palladium. read more

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Reporting by Joori Roh in Seoul Editing by Chris Reese and Matthew Lewis

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