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US refuses to call China a currency manipulator

By Chen Jia (China Daily)

09:18, December 29, 2011

BEIJING - Washington's decision not to name China as a currency manipulator is expected to reduce Sino-US trade frictions triggered by the exchange-rate issue, said analysts.

A two-directional value for the currency is likely to replace the previous one-way (rising) traffic in the coming months, indicating an increase in the influence of the market in response to the US chiding China for slowing reform of the exchange rate, they said.

According to a semi-annual report released by the US Treasury released to the Congress on Tuesday, the Obama administration didn't designate China as currency manipulator. However, the report repeated US complaints that the appreciation of the yuan was "insufficient".

Earlier this year, President Barack Obama came under pressure from the Senate to impose levies on imports from China, the second-largest trading partner of the US, if the country refuses to adopt market-based exchange rates.

The Treasury statement was based on the realities of the international economy rather than political rhetoric, and the US may expect more cooperation with the world's second-largest economy next year amid the risk of global recession, said Wang Haifeng, director of the International Cooperation Center affiliated with the National Development and Reform Commission.

"Sino-US trade frictions, sparked by the exchange-rate issue, may not rise in the short term. That will benefit both countries," Wang said.

John Ross, who used to work as director of economic and business policy for Ken Livingstone, the former mayor of London, said on Tuesday that "if the Obama administration does not cooperate with China, the negative economic consequences will be felt in the US itself".

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