Japan rejects Trump’s accusations of currency manipulation

Tokyo: Japan on Wednesday denied it has been manipulating its foreign exchange market to devalue the yen, rejecting allegations by US President Donald Trump, a media report said.

Japanese government spokesman Yoshihide Suga rejected Trump’s charges as “completely baseless”, Efe news reported.

Suga denied that Japan intervenes in the foreign exchange market. He said the country bases its monetary policy on the G7 and G20 agreements.

Trump said on Tuesday in a meeting with pharmaceutical executives in New York that Japan and China were playing the devaluation market in recent years.

Trump’s remarks prompted the yen to jump in Tokyo markets to around 112 yen against the dollar, a two-month high.

Suga added that Japan’s financial policy was aimed at achieving consumer price index stability and not at bringing down the yen.

Vice Finance Minister for International Affairs Masatsugu Asakawa said Japan’s financial strategy was an internal policy aimed at controlling deflation.

“Foreign exchange rates are led by the markets. We are not manipulating them,” Asakawa told reporters.

Trump had previously criticised Japan and China for their monetary policies and said he intended to include clauses against currency manipulations in the event of negotiating trade agreements with the two countries in future.

The matter was expected to be discussed during the first official meeting between Trump and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on February 10 in Washington which will focus on economic ties and their bilateral security agreement.