SEOUL, Nov. 23 (Xinhua) -- South Korea's foreign debt fell in the third quarter amid rising uncertainty in the global financial market, central bank data showed Wednesday.
Foreign debt came to 638.9 billion U.S. dollars at the end of September, down 23 billion dollars from three months earlier, according to the Bank of Korea (BOK).
The growing uncertainty over the global financial market weakened demand for overseas investment, leading local financial institutions to reduce short-term foreign debts.
Short-term foreign debt with a maturity of less than one year declined 12.9 billion dollars from three months earlier to 170.9 billion dollars at the end of September, marking the fastest quarterly reduction in 11 years.
Long-term external liability retreated 10.1 billion dollars to 468 billion dollars during the July-September quarter.
The ratio of short-term foreign debt to the total external liability shrank 1.0 percentage point to 26.8 percent in the cited quarter, while the ratio of short-term foreign debt to the country's foreign reserves fell 0.9 percentage points to 41.0 percent.
Net external credit, or external credit minus foreign debt, amounted to 379.6 billion dollars at the end of September, down 6.5 billion dollars from three months ago.