US, China Near Deal; Beijing Vows Not to Devalue Yuan to Help Exports
Mar 10, 2019 (Agencia EFE via COMTEX) —
Beijing, Mar 10 (efe-epa).- China’s top central banker signaled that Beijing and Washington are getting close to reaching a currency deal as part of their continuing negotiations to settle a yearlong trade battle, according to a Dow Jones news report supplied to EFE on Sunday.
“Both sides have reached consensus on many crucial and important issues, ” People’s Bank of China Gov. Yi Gang said at a news conference Sunday, held on the sidelines of the nation’s annual legislative session.
As part of the accord, Mr. Yi said, China won’t engage in competitive devaluation to give Chinese exporters a leg up in foreign markets–a commitment Chinese officials have also made in multilateral agreements such as those among the Group of 20 industrial nations. “This is what we promised,” he emphasized. “Absolutely we won’t do this.”
How China manages its currency has been a point of contention between Washington and Beijing for years. President Trump was vocal throughout his election campaign in saying China manipulates the yuan to gain an advantage in trade by making its products relatively cheaper. Mr. Trump repeated the charge last year, when the yuan’s plunge aroused suspicion that Beijing was pushing down its value to offset U.S. tariffs on Chinese products.
In recent trade talks, U.S. negotiators pushed their Chinese counterparts to keep the yuan stable and to improve transparency in currency-market interventions by China’s central bank. During a congressional hearing late last month, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said “we have spent a lot of time on currency and the agreement will be enforceable.”
Still, how the currency deal, if reached, will be enforced remains unclear. Both sides are haggling over an