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Korea's finance minister meets with acting US ambassador to South Korea

SEJONG -- South Korea's finance minister on Wednesday met with the acting US ambassador to South Korea to discuss ways to bolster cooperation between the two countries ahead of the scheduled visit by US Vice President Mike Pence, his office here said.

In a meeting with Marc Knapper, who is acting as the ambassador after Mark Lippert stepped down, Finance Minister Yoo Il-ho said the South Korean government is hoping to build a stable and reciprocal economic and trade relationship with the new US government based on the decadeslong Seoul-Washington alliance.

South Korea's Finance Minister Yoo Il-ho (left) shakes hands with Acting US Ambassador to South Korea Marc Knapper in Seoul on April 12, 2017. (Ministry of Strategy and Finance)
South Korea's Finance Minister Yoo Il-ho (left) shakes hands with Acting US Ambassador to South Korea Marc Knapper in Seoul on April 12, 2017. (Ministry of Strategy and Finance)

The top economic policymaker said Pence's trip to Seoul next week will be a good chance to further develop the bilateral partnership in economy and trade.

The minister also said the South Korean government is making efforts to strike a balance in terms of the trade surplus with the United States through increasing imports of US shale gas.

Its trade surplus with the US hit $23.25 billion in 2016, more than doubling from 2011 on the back of the Seoul-Washington free trade agreement.

Citing the massive surplus, the US government has showed some movements to include South Korea in its list of currency manipulators, along with China, and some other exporting nations.

The updated list is expected to be released later this month. (Yonhap)
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