South Korea to tax lip job, jaw work to fund welfare costs
SEOUL (AFP) - The South Korean government plans to exploit the country's obsession with plastic surgery by extending taxes to popular procedures like lip jobs to help fund spiralling social welfare costs.
The proposed new tax codes slap a 10per cent value-added tax on procedures like lip augmentation, double-jaw surgery and body hair removal beginning 2014, the finance ministry said on Thursday.
Until now, VAT has only been levied on the so-called "big five" treatments - nose jobs, liposuction, facelifts, breast jobs and double-eyelid surgery.
"Our taxes on medical treatments for cosmetic purposes are revised in line with global standards," the ministry said in a statement, adding that most advanced nations tax all medical treatments performed for aesthetic purposes.