The family of the late Lee Kun-hee, the chairman of South Korea’s Samsung Electronics, says it will pay $10.8 billion in taxes on the inheritance from his massive estate, the largest paid in South Korean history.
Lee died last October leaving an estate estimated at more than $23 billion.
The family, which includes his wife and three children, says it will split payments of the hefty tax bill in six installments over five years, with the first payment coming this month.
It is believed they will use the shares they hold in the vast family-run conglomerate as a means to pay the taxes.
The Lee family will also donate the late patriarch’s vast collection of fine art to two state-run museums and other organizations to help ease the burden of the tax bill. The collection includes rare Korean artifacts and works by such legendary artists as Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali, Paul Gauguin and Claude Monet.
The family has also agreed to donate $900 million to build a new hospital devoted to treating infectious diseases, fund research on vaccines and treatment, and support a program that treats children suffering from cancer and rare diseases.
Under the elder Lee, Samsung Electronics became the crown jewel of the Samsung conglomerate, the biggest in South Korea, with holdings in such sectors as shipbuilding, insurance and trading.
Samsung Electronics is the world’s largest maker of semiconductors, smartphones and other consumer electronics. But the family has been mired in a host of corruption scandals, with Lee’s son, Jae-yong, currently serving a two-and-a-half year prison sentence in connection with the scandal that brought down former President Park Geun-hye.
Source: Voice Of America