Posted April. 25, 2005 23:30,
The Ministry of Environment announced that Kia will receive a gas emission certificate for its new Pride sedan with diesel engine in May or June, causing the company to delay operating its production line for the time being
More than 1,000 customers who already placed orders for the car will receive them later than the company had promised.
Minister of Environment Kwak Kyul-ho said in a regular briefing session held at Gwacheon Government Complex that the certification process has been delayed due to an internal reviewing process and confirmed that the certificate will be issued once the process concludes.
Minister Kwak added that the planned energy tax rate modification to raise the price of diesel to 75 percent of that of gasoline will proceed as planned with the Ministry of Finance and Economy. But other ministry officials said that the main reason for delay is Kia`s request to modify some of the product specification, and actual issuance will come between May and June.
Kia Motors, however, blamed the ministry for the slow certification process, saying that it was trying to avoid its responsibility by making excuses.
According to Kia, the basic certificate is supposed to be issued by April 1, with a certificate for minor modification to be finalized by April 14. The company added that it requested from the ministry swift proceedings for the certification on April 13, one day before the original date in which the company should receive a final certificate to commence production.
Kia said that it officially requested the ministry for a faster certification process, as vehicle and parts manufacturers have seen their losses swelling.
Regarding the fact that foreign vehicles have already received certificates for diesel passenger cars, an official of the Environment Ministry explained that National Institute of Environmental Research takes care of certification of foreign cars, while certification for local cars is governed by the ministry.