South Korea is in talks with a few more countries for currency swap deals, the country's finance minister said Saturday, following the Seoul government's announcement that it will soon sign a currency swap contract with Indonesia.
"Currently, there are some more countries with which we are in talks over currency swap lines," Finance Minister Hyun Oh-seok told reporters in Washington. He is there to attend the annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.
Hyun did not name countries but said that they include those with which Korea has a large amount of trade, including imports of natural resources.
His remarks came hours after the government announced that it has reached an agreement with Indonesia to sign a won-rupiah currency swap contract worth US$10 billion, adding that the official signing will come "sooner or later."
The government said that the currency swap with Indonesia will strengthen bilateral economic and financial cooperation. It will also be used to settle payments linked to trade down the road, it noted.
A currency swap is a tool to defend against financial turmoil by allowing a country beset by a liquidity crunch to borrow money from others with its own currency.
The Seoul government has been recently seeking to utilize currency swap deals with other countries to settle payments for trade in a bid to reduce its dependency on the U.S.