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South Korea Says G-20 Didn’t Endorse Japan Quantitative Easing

Feb. 19 (Bloomberg) -- South Korea denied that the Group of 20 nations endorsed Japan’s quantitative easing, an indication that tensions remain after a gathering in Moscow where finance chiefs discussed the weakening yen.

“The message from Moscow should not be understood as that the leaders endorsed Japan’s quantitative easing,” Choi Hee Nam, a director general at the finance ministry, said at a briefing in Sejong. “The G-20 also didn’t officially oppose Japan’s policies, but the topic was very controversial.”

Finance ministers and central bankers from the G-20 didn’t censure Japan for allowing the yen to drop, a fact that gave Japanese economic policies a “green light,” according to Akio Kato, the team leader for Japanese debt at Kokusai Asset Management Co. Since coming to power in a landslide victory in December, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe called on the Bank of Japan to step up asset purchases, driving the yen to the weakest level since May 2010 last week.

The won has gained about 24 percent against the yen in the past six months, aiding Japanese competitors of South Korean companies that export electronics and automobiles.

The yen gained 0.3 percent to reach 93.69 per dollar as of 3:38 p.m. in Tokyo.

To contact the reporter on this story: Cynthia Kim in Seoul at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Paul Panckhurst at

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