The government will strengthen taxation standards for foreigners as part of efforts to stem tax evasion. The Ministry of Strategy and Finance said Sunday that it will submit a revised tax law to the National Assembly next month.
The National Tax Service taxes foreigners residing in Korea based on the duration of their stay in the country. Those who have lived in Korea for more than 12 months over a two-year period are taxed. But starting next year, the standard number of months will be decreased to six, or 183 days.
At present, for example, foreigners who have lived in Korea for four months in 2013 and five months in 2014 do not pay local taxes since the total is less than 12 months. But if they stay in Korea for the same length of time in 2015 and 2016, they will be taxed.
There are 1.75 million foreigners living here. The revision will also affect Koreans who live overseas for part of the year and those with dual citizenship.
"We decided to strengthen regulations because there are many people who make money here but are exempt from taxes because they live mainly overseas," a ministry official said.