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N. Korea risks have limited impact on S. Korea: finance chief

2017/09/22 13:27

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SEOUL, Sept. 22 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's finance minister has said tensions over North Korea's nuclear and missile tests are likely to have a limited impact on Asia's fourth-largest economy.

Kim Dong-yeon said South Korea has solid fundamentals and its financial markets and the real economy sector have quickly stabilized, according to the ministry.

Finance Minister made the comments in a meeting with senior officials of the global rating agency Standard & Poor's at the S&P headquarters in New York on Thursday. Kim accompanied President Moon Jae-in on his visit to the U.N. General Assembly.

S&P said that it has a positive outlook on the South Korean economy and the meeting helped its officials better understand impacts stemming from North Korea's nuclear and missile programs, as well as Moon's economic policy, according to the ministry.

Tensions have escalated on the Korean Peninsula in recent months as North Korea has fired intercontinental ballistic missiles and carried out its sixth and most powerful nuclear test.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has vowed to take the "highest-level" action in response to U.S. President Donald Trump's threat to "totally destroy" the North over its nuclear and missile programs.

North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho said in New York that North Korea may consider carrying out its most powerful hydrogen bomb test in the Pacific Ocean.

Last week, Kim Eng Tan, senior director of Asia-Pacific sovereign ratings at S&P, said in Seoul that the impact is relatively limited as long as there is no actual outbreak of war.

Tan said North Korea's intention is not to create a war on the Korean Peninsula but to get the U.S.' attention and force Washington to accept Pyongyang as a normal nation in the global scheme of things.

Last month, S&P reaffirmed its long-term sovereign rating on South Korea at "AA" and maintained its outlook at "stable," despite heightened tensions on the Korean Peninsula.