TOKYO: Japan's external assets rose to a record high in 2022, with the balance inflated by the yen's steep depreciation, the government said in a report on Friday.

According to the Finance Ministry, the country's net balance of external assets stood at a record 418.63 trillion yen ($2.99 trillion) in 2022, rising 0.2 percent from a year earlier.

The Japanese government's external assets, along with those held by firms and individuals, also marked a record high, rising 6.6 percent to 1,338.24 trillion yen ($9.56 trillion) and marking the 14th straight annual increase, the data showed.

Divergent policies between the Bank of Japan and other major central banks such as the US Federal Reserve, with the former maintaining an ultra-loose policy, compared to others' monetary tightening, has contributed to the yen's weakness, which tumbled nearly 15 percent last year against the US dollar.

The annual increase in the net balance was capped by the prices of foreign government bonds dropping commensurate with their yields rising, the finance ministry also said.

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According to the ministry, Japan's liabilities overseas climbed 9.6 percent from a year earlier to a record 919.61 trillion yen (6.57 trillion dollars), owing to Japan seeing direct investment by non-Japanese residents increase, with the rise marking the fourth successive year of expansion.

In yen terms, Japan remained the world's biggest creditor for the 32nd consecutive year, data showed.