China rejects EU calls for yuan appreciation

16:53, November 30, 2009      

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Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao rejected "unfair" calls for the yuan to appreciate Monday and reaffirmed China's determination to take its own gradual steps on the value of its currency.

Wen made this statement following the start of the 12th EU-China summit Monday. EU political and economic leaders are urging China to move more quickly in loosening controls that keep the yuan linked to the weakening dollar.

"Some countries are now calling for yuan appreciation while imposing trade protectionism on China, which is unfair and actually limits China's development," Wen said at a briefing after summit.

In the financial crisis, "a stable yuan is helpful for the development of the Chinese economy and the world's economic recovery," he added.

The thorny question of the yuan's exchange rate has dominated two days of talks, and European leaders have acknowledged that they had failed to shift the country's stance on its currency.

Wen also accused critics of China's policies as "practicing trade protectionism against developing countries."

Faced with the present complex economic conditions, we must appropriately handle trade friction and not engage in trade protectionism. I hope the EU will relax its controls on high-tech exports to China," Wen said.

"An orderly and gradual appreciation of the yuan would be in the best interests of China and the European economy," Jean-Claude Juncker, president of the Eurogroup said Sunday.

China has kept the yuan at about 6.83 against the dollar since July 2008. In the past year, the yuan fell more than 14 percent against the euro.

The euro has surged about 20 percent against the dollar since February 18, which hinders the European region's recovery from the economic slump.

Source: Global Times
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