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BOK chief to hold annual talks with Chinese, Japanese counterparts

2017/09/13 00:49

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SEOUL, Sept. 13 (Yonhap) -- The heads of the central banks of South Korea, China and Japan are set to begin annual talks Wednesday to discuss the economic and financial situations in the region, an official said.

Bank of Korea Gov. Lee Ju-yeol is scheduled to meet with his Chinese counterpart Zhou Xiaochuan and Japanese counterpart Haruhiko Kuroda in Songdo, a city west of Seoul, the official said.

The three neighbors have taken turns hosting a meeting of governors of their central banks since 2009 to promote cooperation and regional financial stability.

A key issue at the two-day meeting is whether Lee and Zhou will discuss a bilateral currency swap agreement that is set to expire next month.

South Korea's Finance Minister Kim Dong-yeon said earlier this month that working-level talks have been under way over the extension of the deal between South Korea and China. He did not elaborate.

Some South Koreans are concerned that the diplomatic tension between Seoul and Beijing could jeopardize the currency swap agreement.

Last year, South Korea and China agreed to prolong the bilateral deal, which was first initiated in 2009 with a value of 32 trillion won (US$27 billion) and expanded to 64 trillion won in 2011.

China has taken a series of economic retaliations against South Korea, including a ban on group tours to South Korea, in protest of the deployment of an advanced U.S. missile defense system in South Korea.

Seoul and Washington said the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system is only meant to counter North Korea's evolving nuclear and missile threats. But China has repeatedly pressed South Korea to withdraw the missile system out of concern that the deployment could hurt Beijing's security interests.