South Korea Central Bank Sees Challenging April 14 Policy Review

South Korea’s central bank senior deputy governor Lee Seung-heon said on Monday that the policy review meeting later this month will be challenging, citing higher inflationary risks and dim prospects for growth.

“Upward pressure on inflation and downside risks on growth have increased due to such factors as the Ukraine crisis and surging commodity prices,” said Lee, who is serving as acting chair of the Bank of Korea (BOK) after Lee Ju-yeol left office last week.

“Financial market volatility has also intensified as central banks in major countries have moved fast in their policy turnaround,” acting governor Lee added, according to local media.

Lee maintained that thorough analysis on rising commodity prices and economic conditions are needed ahead of the BOK’s rate-setting meeting April 14.

BOK’s key interest rate currently stands at 1.25 percent after it was raised three times since August last year to tame inflation.

South Korea’s consumer prices shot up 3.7 percent year-on-year in February, well above the central bank’s target of 2 percent due to high energy costs.


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