ADB chief plays down speculation about Bank of Japan job

Asian Development Bank president Haruhiko Kuroda on Friday played down speculation that he was set to become the next Bank of Japan chief, insisting he was happy with his current position.

"I am fully satisfied with my current job," Kuroda told reporters in New Delhi, where he was attending a meeting on sustainable development, after being asked if he was interested in the position.

Kuroda is widely regarded in financial circles as a leading candidate to replace Bank of Japan Governor Masaaki Shirakawa, whose term ends in April.

Kuroda, who has served in various senior Japanese finance ministry posts, was elected to a five-year term as head of the ADB, which offers funding and advice to Asian nations to accelerate growth and diminish poverty.

"I have nearly four more years to serve as (ADB) president," Kuroda said.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has said he wants the person who becomes the central bank chief to support aggressive monetary easing to end the country's long-running deflation.

Kuroda recently spoke out in favour of relaxing monetary policy until Japan attains two-percent inflation.

Other possible candidates for the Japan central bank post include its former deputy head, Kazumasa Iwata, and former economy minister, Heizo Takenaka.

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