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Finance minister stresses 'firm' action against steep currency volatility

All Headlines 09:12 April 12, 2018

SEJONG, April 12 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's chief economic policymaker on Thursday delivered a message to his U.S. counterpart that the country's currency authorities will maintain their currency market-smoothing operations going forward, according to the finance ministry.

Talking on the phone with U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin earlier in the day, Finance Minister Kim Dong-yeon also explained trade conditions with the world's largest economy, stressing that South Korea should not be included on Washington's currency manipulators list.

The U.S. Treasury Department is set to release its semiannual currency report this month.

Last October, Washington kept South Korea on its "monitoring list" but did not designate it as a currency manipulator, as Seoul met only two out of the three criteria to become a currency manipulator -- trade surplus, current account surplus and market intervention.

Seoul's finance ministry said earlier South Korea is considering disclosing details of its intervention in the foreign exchange market in a move to boost transparency and clear itself of suspicion of influencing exchange rates.

South Korea's financial authorities have persistently claimed they do not interfere in the foreign exchange market but engage in "smoothing operations" against extreme one-sided movements.

Washington has vowed to aggressively keep tabs on and combat unfair currency practices, saying the U.S. cannot and will not bear the burden of an international trading system that, it claims, unfairly disadvantages American exports and gives an edge to its trading partners.

sam@yna.co.kr
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