EU keeps low profile in U.S.-China currency row

16:40, April 05, 2010      

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When the United States is pushing China hard to appreciate its currency, the European Union (EU) appears not in a hurry to follow Washington's suit since Brussels has more to weigh up.

In a new round of offensive against China's currency policy, a group of U.S. congressmen have recently ratcheted up pressure on appreciation of the Chinese currency Renminbi (RMB), or yuan.

They threatened Beijing with a call on the White House to label China as currency manipulator and to impose trade sanctions on China, alleging an undervalued yuan gave an unfair advantage to Chinese exporters and contributed to trade deficits between the two trading partners.

But China rejected the accusation, insisting its currency was not undervalued and a stronger yuan would not redress U.S.-China trade imbalance.

So far, the EU has kept a low profile behind the ongoing war of words between the United States and China.

EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht, who is going to visit China later this month, is one of the few high-ranking officials in Brussels who recently joined the debate on China's currency policy. He did voice support for a stronger yuan, but disagreed with the U.S. approach of pressing China with trade sanctions.

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