The South Korean won's recent weakening against the U.S. dollar is seen as a natural phenomenon in line with globally-increased risk aversion, Vice Finance Minister Lim Young-rok said on Friday.

Lim also told a program on state-run KBS radio that there was no need for the government to lower the 5 percent economic growth forecast for 2008 but that risks, such as higher oil prices, were growing from outside the country.

We view the dollar/won exchange rate's recent rise as a natural phenomenon that has been influenced by investors' preference for safer assets in global markets, he said.

The won had fallen 3.5 percent so far this month against the U.S. dollar and dropped 10 percent against the yen.

Lim also listed a possible recession in the U.S. economy, any local fallout from accelerating inflation in China and a global trend of unwinding in yen carry trades as risks facing Asia's fourth-largest economy.

South Korea's economy expanded 5.0 percent last year and the Finance Ministry expects it to grow by nearly 5 percent this year, slightly above a 4.6 percent rise forecast earlier by the ministry for the whole of 2007.

(Reporting by Yoo Choonsik; Editing by Keiron Henderson)