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(LEAD) S. Korea, partners amend regional financial safety net

Economy 16:01 December 14, 2018

(ATTN: UPDATES with details)

SEJONG, Dec. 14 (Yonhap) -- South Korea, China, Japan and their partners in Southeast Asia amended a regional financial safety net on Friday in the latest move to better cope with possible financial crises.

The agreement was reached in a meeting of finance and central bank deputies of South Korea, China, Japan and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in South Korea's southeastern port city of Busan, according to the Ministry of Economy and Finance.

(LEAD) S. Korea, partners amend regional financial safety net - 1

ASEAN comprises Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand, Singapore and Vietnam.

The move came seven months after their finance ministers and central bank governors agreed to strengthen a regional financial safety net, known as the Chiang Mai Initiative Multilateralization (CMIM)

In May, they agreed to reinforce financial support, including the flexibility to extend the period of provision under the IMF-linked portion of the CMIM agreement.

They also agreed to add an overarching legal basis for conditionality in order for the CMIM to support members in addressing their risks and vulnerabilities through policy recommendations, as well as financial support.

The CMIM -- launched in 2010 -- refers to the US$240 billion pool that can be tapped through currency swap deals in times of financial crisis.

Separately, the ASEAN+3 Macroeconomic Research Office -- a Singapore-based organization for regional economic surveillance -- forecast that economic growth of South Korea, China and Japan could be lower next year, compared with 2018, South Korea's economy ministry said, without giving details.

In October, the International Monetary Fund slashed South Korea's growth outlook for next year to 2.6 percent from its projection of 2.9 percent in April.


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