Japan's top government spokesman said the Group of 20's agreement to avoid competitive currency devaluation does not mean Japan cannot intervene in response to one-sided currency moves.
The Bank of Japan and the government are tensely watching currency markets and the government is prepared to take appropriate steps as needed, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told Reuters, but declined to comment on what steps the government was considering.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's comment to the Wall Street Journal last week that countries should avoid "arbitrary intervention," was misunderstood and does not rule out intervention for Japan, Suga said.
"What the G20 is talking about is arbitrary intervention, which is different from responding to a one-sided move," Suga told Reuters in an interview on Saturday.
"The prime minister's comments were based on the G20 understanding that long-term manipulation of currencies is undesirable."