Hyundai and its Korean rival Kia have increased sales in Europe while manufacturers such as French group PSA Peugeot-Citroen have run into trouble.
Peugeot intends to shed 8,000 jobs, presenting the French government with a high-profile challenge as it tries to boost economic activity.
On Tuesday, Montebourg told another radio programme, „Face a la Presse,” that he would not visit South Korean automakers’ stands at the Paris auto show which opens to sector professionals on Thursday.
„I will pass them by,” said the minister, who has already taken the Korean carmakers to task, before adding: „Commercial dumping looks like social dumping.”
Dumping typically refers to the practice of selling goods for less than they cost to garner market share.
In early August, Montebourg said that France would ask the European Commission to begin monitoring car imports from South Korea in the first step towards a possible re-introduction of tariffs.
On Wednesday he said: „I am telling the French that in buying Hyundais and Kias they are contributing in a way to the labour crisis.”
He urged consumers to „look at what is behind a car’s windows” when they shop around.
Gourvennec told Europe 1 that „the consumer is sufficiently well informed to avoid confusion between the problem of social dumping, which does not exist in this case,” and a manufacturer that has established a presence in Europe.
He said that just 10 percent of the cars his company sells in Europe were made in South Korea, with the rest built on the continent. AFP