Japan minister: not trying to weaken yen, central bank

DAVOS, Switzerland (Reuters) - Japan's economy minister said on Saturday his country's extraordinary fiscal and monetary stimulus program was not aimed at weakening the yen or undermining central bank independence.

Akira Amari told the World Economic Forum in Davos it was up to the market to determine the currency's exchange rate, and the Bank of Japan had chosen independently to sign a joint statement with the government on actions to fight deflation and revive economic growth.

"You might think there's a deliberate policy to drive down the value of the yen but we in government refrain from commenting on the exchange rate of the yen," Amari said in response to criticism of Japanese action.

(Reporting by Lisa Jucca and Paul Taylor; Writing by Paul Taylor)