South Korea’s Finance Ministry expressed regrets over Japan’s decision to suspend bilateral talks on a currency swap deal owing to rising diplomatic tensions.
“We regret that the talks on the Korea-Japan currency swap deal was suspended due to political and diplomatic issues,” the Ministry of Strategy and Finance said in a statement, adding, “It is desirable that the two countries continue bilateral economic and financial cooperation regardless of political and diplomatic relations.”
Earlier in the day, the Japanese government said that it has withdrawn from the negotiations with South Korea to reopen the currency swap deal, mentioning Seoul's recent move to let the statue symbolizing the victims of Japan's wartime sexual slavery be built in front of its consulate building in the southern port city of Busan.
In August last year, Finance Minister Yoo Il-ho and his Japanese counterpart Taro Aso agreed on the resumption of their currency swap as the $10 billion deal expired in February 2015.
The first currency swap deal between the two countries signed in 2001 and the amount has been increased by small amounts such as US$3 billion and US$10 billion. An increase of more than US$50 billion at a time has been carried out only in 2011, when the increment was US$53 billion.