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Korea Ranked 57th in Gold Reserves With 14.4 Tons

Posted March. 23, 2010 02:58,   


Korea has the world’s 10th-largest economy and ranks sixth in the amount of foreign currency reserves, but its supply of gold is far smaller than expected.

The Strategy and Finance Ministry yesterday said the World Gold Council recently informed governments of their gold reserves as of late last year. The council said Korea had 14.4 tons of gold, ranking 57th among 113 nations.

Though Korea’s gold reserves increased from 14.3 tons in June last year, its global ranking fell one notch.

On average, the gold holdings of countries in the survey amounted to 10 percent of their foreign exchange reserves, but Korea’s ratio was just 0.2 percent. Accordingly, Seoul might believe it needs to secure more gold.

“The ratio of gold to foreign exchange reserves doesn’t necessarily need to stay at a higher level, but gold has turned out to be a good investment. Accordingly, we have carefully considered whether to purchase more gold, while closely watching other nations in this regard,” a ministry official said.

The U.S. had the world’s largest gold reserves of 8,133.5 tons, 566 times larger than Korea’s, and can mobilize 70.4 percent of its foreign currency reserves as gold for use in emergencies such as war.

Germany had the second-largest gold reserves with 3,406.8 tons, followed by the International Monetary Fund (3,005.3), Italy (2,451.8), France (2,435.4), China (1,054.1), Switzerland (1,040.1) and Japan (765.2).