Korea vows to thoroughly prepare for destabilizing factors


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South Korea will make thorough preparations for any destabilizing factors after the US raised interest rates, a senior official said Thursday.

Lee Ho-seung, the first vice minister of economy and finance, also said in a meeting with relevant officials in Seoul that a possible hike in market rates in South Korea is something that is acceptable.

First vice minister of economy and finance Lee Ho-seung (Yonhap)

His comments came hours after the US Federal Reserve upped the rates to a range of 2.25 percent to 2.50 percent, putting rate spread between the US and South Korea at 0.75 percentage point.

In November, the Bank of Korea raised the policy rate by a quarter percentage point for the first time in a year to 1.75 percent.

Lee also said South Korea will maintain round-the-clock monitoring of financial markets and risk factors while closely monitoring outflow of foreign funds from the South Korean financial market.

“We will sternly deal with (situations) under contingency plans if necessary,” Lee said.

In September, foreign investors became net sellers for the first time in nine months, dumping a net $1.98 billion worth of local shares amid market jitters over trade disputes between the US and China. (Yonhap)


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