The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. With nearly 300 released each year, working papers cover a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
This paper discusses the timing of monetary integration and supporting economic policies during a rapid and largely uncontrolled process of Korean unification. The paper concludes that the transitory use of a separate currency in each region and supporting economic policies would help limit the initial costs of unification although the extent of the eventual cost reduction would depend critically on the success of ensuing economic reforms in the North during the transition. Maintaining the competitiveness of the northern economy would need to be a primary policy objective in the case of an early introduction of a common currency.