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A gradual yuan adjustment sits well with China economy
Latest Updated by 2006-04-11 11:34:12
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Asian Development Bank President Haruhiko Kuroda said yesterday that the pace of the adjustment of Chinese yuan should be decided by the Chinese authorities themselves.

"A flexible yuan would be in the interests of the Chinese economy," Kuroda told reporters at the end of a two-day meeting of the European and Asian finance ministers in Vienna, Austria.

"But only a gradual adjustment is appropriate for a country like China," he said, adding China has been a powerhouse for world economic growth in recent years.

China ended the yuan's peg to the US dollar last July, replacing it with a managed float with reference to a basket of major international currencies.

"The move has resulted in more flexibility of the yuan," Kuroda said.

Speaking at the same news conference, Austrian Finance Minister Karl-Heinz Grasser, whose country holds the rotating presidency of the European Union, said a "gradual" move to a more flexible yuan exchange rate would be good for world economy.

"A more gradual flexibility of the yuan would be a good thing," Grasser added.

Austrian Chancellor Wolfgang Schuessel said on Saturday at the start of meeting that European and Asian countries - the world's largest energy importers - can learn from each other to tackle the problems of a tight energy supply.

"While Asian and European countries are geographically far apart, our problems are quite similar," he said. "A solution can benefit from discussions, from learning from each other best practices, from cooperation."

Oil prices spiked last year after Hurricane Katrina knocked out oil refineries off the US Gulf Coast, highlighting the growing hunger for imported energy from rapidly developing economies.

European leaders agreed last month to tackle what Schuessel described as the EU's "fragile situation" with its energy supply by aiming to shave 20 percent off energy consumption by 2020, develop more green power and widen the types of energy it uses.

Finance ministers from 13 Asian countries - Brunei, Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand and Vietnam - are meeting counterparts from European nations and EU officials.

The Asia-Europe meeting discussed the world economic situation before the International Monetary Fund meeting in Washington on April 21. The Washington meeting will deal with possible problems with the global flow of money.

Editor: Yan

By: Source: Shanghai Daily web edition
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