Lotte's Chinese Web site Reopens in Possible Easing of Tensions

Write : 2017-05-16 13:45:20 Update : 2017-05-16 15:48:11

Lotte's Chinese Web site Reopens in Possible Easing of Tensions

Anchor: There are signs China may ease its retaliatory measures against South Korea over its decision to deploy the U.S. THAAD antimissile system. For one, South Korea's Lotte Mart is back on the web in China. 
Our Kim In-kyung has more.
 
Report: The South Korean retailer’s Web site in China is up and running again.
 
Lotte took it down two months ago after Beijing closed many of its stores in China. It's widely believed the closures were in response to Seoul allowing the U.S. to deploy the antiballistic missile system THAAD to the Korean Peninsula. Chinese people boycotted the brand as well.
 
The Web site’s return may indicate China’s retaliation over THAAD is easing as Seoul-Beijing ties shows signs of warming.   
 
After taking office last week, President Moon Jae-in had a conversation on the phone with Chinese President Xi Jinping. South Korea also sent representatives to China's Belt and Road Summit.
 
However, many Lotte Mart stores in China remain closed and it could take some time before business returns to normal.
 
Lotte has borne the brunt of anger by Beijing over THAAD. In a land swap agreement, Lotte gave the South Korean government one of its golf courses which is now home to the antimissile system.
 
Of 99 Lotte Marts in China, 74 are still closed after government inspections that found fire code violations. Thirteen stores closed voluntarily.
 
According to an industry official, Chinese authorities told Lotte affiliates about additional taxes they should pay following an audit of the retailer’s Chinese operations last November.
 
The official said the additional taxes aren’t too high and Lotte expects to adjust the sum with tax authorities.
 
Before THAAD, Chinese authorities had never launched an all-out inspection against Lotte in China.
Kim In-kyung, KBS World Radio News. 

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