Finance ministers of S. Korea, U.S., Japan recognize concerns over sharp won, yen declines

Apr 19, 2024, 10:18 am

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South Korean Finance Minister Choi Sang-mok (right) and Japanese Finance Minister Shunichi Suzuki (left) listen to U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen’s remarks ahead of their first trilateral meeting at the U.S. Treasury in Washington, U.S., on April 17, 2024./ Source: Washington correspondent Ha Man-joo

AsiaToday Washington correspondent Ha Man-joo 

The finance ministers of South Korea, the United Staes and Japan said on Wednesday that they are seriously concerned about the recent sharp depreciation of the South Korean won and Japanese yen and will closely consult with each other. The finance chiefs of the three countries jointly expressed concern over the weak won and yen due to the retreat of expectations for a cut in the U.S. benchmark interest rate and growing instability in the security landscape of the Middle East.

South Korea’s Finance Minister Choi Sang-mok, U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and Japan’s Finance Minister Shunichi Suzuki issued a joint press statement following their first trilateral talks in Washington D.C. 

“We will continue to consult closely on foreign exchange market developments in line with our existing G20 commitments,” they said in a statement. “We acknowledged serious concerns of Japan and the Republic of Korea about the recent sharp depreciation of the Japanese yen and the Korean won.”

The three finance ministers also stressed that they will continue to cooperate to promote sustainable economic growth, financial stability, as well as orderly and well-functioning financial markets. It is interpreted that the finance chiefs shared their concerns about the recent excessive weakening of the Korean and Japanese currencies.

In his opening remarks, Choi underscored the need for trilateral cooperation to respond to financial volatility that could result from uncertainties in the real-sector economy.

Meanwhile, the won-dollar exchange rate plunged to 1,370 on Thursday thanks to the verbal intervention of financial ministers of South Korea, the U.S. and Japan in the foreign exchange market. On the same day, the won-dollar exchange rate closed at 1,372.9 won against the U.S. dollar in the Seoul foreign exchange market, down 13.9 won from the previous day.

#finance ministers #South Korea #US #Japan #won 
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