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Follow the Debate - Yuan Revaluation and Internationalisation News Archive April 2012



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Yuan Revaluation & Internationalisation

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People's Daily   24/4/2012

Wider Trading Limit

Aside from meeting overseas clients, exhibitors at the 111th Canton Fair, China's biggest export fair which kicked off on April 15 in southeast China's Guangdong Province, were also concerned with the new move in the yuan-dollar trading band.

On April 16, the People's Bank of China, the central bank, widened the trading band for the yuan against the U.S. dollar to 1 percent from 0.5 percent.

"The yuan will witness more fluctuations in the future. We must get ready for that," said Gao Yuanjia, General Manager of Chunlan Import and Export Co. Ltd., an air conditioner maker and exporter based in east China's Jiangsu Province.

In the foreign exchange spot market, Chinese banks can exchange the yuan 1 percent above or below the central parity against the U.S. dollar announced by the China Foreign Exchange Trading System each trading day. Previously, the daily trading limit was set at 0.5 percent.


ICBC pledges to boost off-shore RMB trade in Europe

The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) (London) plc said on Monday it would work on boosting off-shore trading of Chinese currency RMB, also known as yuan, here in Europe.

Xu Jinlei, general manager of ICBC London, said ICBC London would work hard to develop itself into a European center of off-shore RMB trading, syndicated loans, trade finance, and capital and precious metal trading, to provide high-quality financial service for clients worldwide.

He made the comments during the inauguration ceremony of ICBC's new headquarters in the City Of London.

Chinese ambassador to Britain Liu Xiaoming also expressed his hope to further strengthen of bilateral economic, trade and financial cooperation between the two countries during the ceremony.


Caixin Online   24/4/2012

Hong Kong to Launch Yuan Futures This Year

The planned roll-out of yuan futures contracts in Hong Kong comes amidst a slew of announcements to expand the use of the yuan in international trade settlements


Caixin Online   20/4/2012

IMF Cuts Estimate of China's Current Account Surplus

Reduced projection and recent moves likely to ease pressure for further boosting of the yuan


The Wall Street Journal   20/4/2012

China's Yuan Still in Prison

China's currency is like a prisoner that has been moved from solitary confinement into general circulation. It has more room to stretch, but it's still not free.


People's Daily   19/4/2012

RMB exchange rate reforms take a giant step

The reform concerning making the exchange rate more flexible is a strategic initiative for pushing forward the market-oriented reforms of RMB exchange rate.


Asia Times Online   19/4/2012

Beijing takes steps
to free-float currency

China's decision to widen the trading limit of its currency amid a slowing economy is evidence it is not worried about a hard landing or rapid yuan appreciation, yet external politics, including the US presidential election and this week's IMF/World Bank meeting, are no doubt central factors in the timing of the announcement. - Richard Colapinto


The Wall Street Journal   18/4/2012

  • [dimsum]

    HSBC Eyes London Yuan Bond

    HSBC Holdings is marketing a potential yuan-denominated bond that would be listed in London as it seeks to expand the market for so-called "dim sum" bonds in Europe and become the leader of a new market


The People's Daily   17/4/2012

Central bank gives yuan more latitude

The yuan dipped against the US dollar on Monday after the central bank doubled the currency's daily trading band but analysts predict an appreciating trend for 2012.

It was the first time since May 2007 that the trading band was widened.

Despite the dip, the yuan will appreciate against the dollar throughout 2012, although at a slower pace and with more volatility, analysts said.

The People's Bank of China, the central bank, announced on Saturday that the yuan would be allowed to fluctuate by 1 percent from a daily midpoint - double the previous 0.5 percent.

The central bank set the exchange rate against the dollar at 6.296 on the first trading day, 0.13 percent lower than on Friday.

But the actual trading rate for the yuan against the greenback depreciated to 6.3150 in Shanghai, according to the China Foreign Exchange Trade System.

It declined as much as 0.46 percent from the reference rate, before narrowing losses later.


China Daily   17/4/2012

Central bank gives yuan more latitude

Currency falls as trading band widened for first time in five years.


The Wall Street Journal   17/4/2012

An Important Shift in the Yuan Debate

For much of the last decade, the pivot around which the world economy turned was China’s current account surplus – the broadest measure of its unbalanced trade.

A ballooning surplus as China’s exports soared provided the smoking gun in the case against China’s undervalued currency. Economists reasoned that it was the undervalued yuan that was responsible for China’s massive surplus, and a substantial appreciation would be required to correct it.

But with the surplus shrinking rapidly, economists are returning to their spreadsheets to determine what contraction means for the yuan. Among them is Peterson Institute analyst William Cline, one of the world’s leading authorities on China’s currency, who says the yuan might not nearly be as undervalued has he previously estimated.


World Reacts To Yuan Move

On Saturday, China’s central bank said it would let the yuan move 1% up or down against the dollar from a level it sets each day. It had previously kept the trading band at 0.5% on either side of the parity rate – and had last adjusted the trading band in May 2007.

China has long been under pressure from its major trading partners to free up the controls on the yuan and let the market play a bigger role in determining the currency’s value. Some foreign governments and lots of businesses and labor unions have insisted that the yuan has been kept at an artificially low rate to keep China’s exports competitive.


  • Heard on the Street

  • [0413yuan01]

    Yuan Band Widens, Yuan Bet Unwinds

    By widening the yuan's trading band, Beijing has banged another nail in the coffin of hopes for rapid yuan appreciation.


China Loosens Grip on Yuan
Central Bank Widens Currency's Trading Range; Move Could Ease Trade Tensions

BEIJING—China made one of its strongest moves yet to show that it believes the yuan is ready to become a global currency by loosening daily trading limits.

The move to widen the currency's trading range, which went into effect Monday, doesn't eliminate Beijing's tight grip on the yuan. China's central bank still sets a daily reference rate for its currency. On Monday in China, the yuan opened modestly weaker in currency trading, after the central bank set a reference rate for the yuan stronger than Friday's market close.


Yuan Band Move Is Selling Tool

China's move to increase the trading flexibility of its currency gives banks a new selling pitch for bonds, derivatives and other investments denominated in yuan.


The New York Times   17/4/2012

China Adjusts Currency Trading Rules

The Chinese government announced on Saturday that it would allow the renminbi to vary more in value against the dollar during each day’s trading.


Caixin Onlin   24/3/2012

Yuan Move Linked to More Reforms

Decision to expand the upper and lower daily trading range seen as sign of further changes,

Japan looks set to depress the value of the yen to boost trade – how China must brace itself for the impact



People's Daily   13/4/2012

Locke: US, China differ on how far and how much RMB should appreciate


China Daily   12/4/2012

System to promote yuan use globally

A system to settle cross-border yuan payments and boost the convertibility of the currency will be set up.


The Wall Street Journal    3/4/2012

Shanghai Plans Trial Yuan Program

Shanghai is planning to roll out a pilot program to allow foreign hedge funds and others to raise yuan funds on the mainland for overseas investment, according to a senior Chinese financial official and industry players.


People's Daily   29/3/2012

Renminbi rate near 'equilibrium'


China Daily   24/3/2012

Yuan reference rate hits record high

China's central bank set the daily reference rate for the yuan against the dollar at 6.2891 on Friday.


The Wall Street Journal   23/3/2012

China Sets Yuan Post at Record High

The Chinese central bank set the yuan's reference exchange rate at a record high Friday, extending a weeklong campaign to strengthen the currency.




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Set in Zanzibar in 1910, it is the story of two people from different worlds falling in love. Susan immerses herself in Zanzibar. Asim falls in love with this woman from the nation that killed his wife. Susan is a spy. Asim is the chief advisor to the Sultan of Zanzibar. Germany and France are holding secret negotiations to form a Pan European alliance, which would isolate Britain and destroy her power. Susan and Asim are caught up in all this and their love is finally dashed on the cold, hard reality of international high politics.



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 Chapter One


'A maharaja’s ruby cast on a Persian carpet by the blackest of hands'



Their souls danced, honouring his promise.

The ancient dhow stirred in the soft morning breeze. Like a sleepy lion, it began to move through the water, snuffling about the other boats on the harbour; some scurrying, some at anchor, some darting before a brief gust of wind. The lateen sails a bustling panorama of blood-red and sun-bleached white.

Aft, the woman's eyes searched the skyline, drinking in the architecture of Stone Town, the heart of Zanzibar; its jagged, cluttered silhouette so familiar, so much a part of her soul.

Abruptly, her eyes ceased their restless searching, jagged by an invisible hook, transfixed by the grand buildings on the northern shore, Beit-al-Ajaib, the House of Wonders, Palace to the great Sultan of Zanzibar. The distinctive architecture captured in the tropical light: coconut white outlined by contrasting shadow plays of pepper black.

A smile, ever so slight, started to play on the edge of her mouth then disappeared. A memory that should have been fond instantly turned to sharp unbearable pain. Her eyes hardened and moved on.

Without warning the captain threw the rudder over. Stumbling, the woman barked her shin on a wooden box, a rough-hewn coffin. She recoiled, knocking over an untidy stack of cane baskets. Imprisoned in the baskets, rusty cockerels, their scruffy heads straining through the latticework, snapped at her, cried out to her; their raucous din overwhelming her, drowning her.

Dimly, through the fog of noise, the strident swearing of the sailors in Kiswahili seeped into her conscious. Understanding, she smiled mirthlessly.

The coffin had been carelessly stowed, a chore, rather than a labour of respect or love.





London 1910


“Hello, who are you? I am Oliver, is Edward at home?”

The words were spoken by a tall, impeccably dressed young man as he rushed into Edward’s flat shaking off surplus water and calling for whisky while shoving his umbrella into a stand. It was a blustery, grey, bitterly cold February afternoon in the heart of London. He brushed a curl of soft auburn hair from his forehead and smiled charmingly.

Susan laughed, her hazel eyes dancing with the exhilaration of the new. “Yes, he is having a bath. I think he is trying to get warm. I’m Susan, Susan Carey, his sister.”

“Ahhh yes, from Australia. How do you do?” said Sir Oliver, smiling broadly and offering his hand. He noticed the laughter in her eyes, and the depth, particularly the depth, intensified by jade flecks that made them striking and alluring. “So, you have arrived, good trip I trust.”

“I am very well thank you, and yes, it was a good trip,” replied Susan.

He laughed and glanced at the sitting room, “whisky?”

“Oh, I’m sorry, please come in…….. that was silly of me, after all, it is your flat.”

Oliver smiled and gestured for Susan to lead the way. He followed her into the room, and after helping himself to a generous portion of whisky, walked over to the fire.

Shortly after, Edward, wrapped in a huge ruby-coloured dressing gown and wiping soap from his ear strode into the room. He was of similar age to Oliver, late twenties, well built, if slightly podgy, with dark auburn hair and a full moustache. Susan looked up and smiled to herself, she could see now where he had picked up some of his new mannerisms.

“Thought I could hear voices. I see you two have met, no need for introductions then.”

As he was speaking, Edward walked to the side table and grabbed a whisky decanter by the neck. He glanced at Oliver who nodded. A long finger snaked into one of the tumblers followed by the distinctive clink of crystal. He swept the decanter off the table and carried it to where Oliver was sitting. After pouring the whisky, he sank into a lounge chair and sipped from his glass, enjoying the warm glow as it spread through his body.

Suddenly he sat up exclaiming, “Sorry sis, would you like something to drink?”

“Kind of you to remember, but no thank you, and yes, Oliver has already inquired.”

Edward nodded and sank back into his lounge chair.

They chatted, tentatively at first, getting to know one another. Edward had not seen Susan for two years and was unsure how his sister would take his new relationship. Oliver was intrigued by Susan. An attractive, self-assured young lady of high intelligence with a degree was a rare find. And, as fate would have it, she was also a trained and experienced teacher. He suggested a picnic at Oxford, which was met with ready acquiescence. Arrangements were made for the following Sunday.

“I’ll see if the Rolls is available,” mused Oliver. “Must ring father, haven’t spoken to him in ages.”

Oliver, Sir Oliver Marchmaine, was an unaffected young man of intense intelligence who saw life as a great adventure to be lived to the full. He was also unyieldingly loyal to his country, England, which is why he had joined Military Intelligence on leaving Oxford.

It was 1910 and Europe was stirring. It was a time full of interest, intrigue and danger. The European chessboard was becoming increasingly complex, the moves more subtle. A time when an unexpected move or feint could have profound consequences.



Regaining her balance, the woman’s eyes were drawn, hesitantly at first, resisting back to Beit-al-Ajaib. She wondered if it was still the same. Still the same centre of power and intrigue that had been so much a part of her life all those years before; that had defined her life.

She remembered those first few moments, remembered standing in the foyer of the palace, .………… remembered the breathtakingly beautiful Persian tapestry ........

The sea breeze stirred her clothes. She smiled a little sadly, and in her mind the tapestry gently swayed. Two small apparitions ran giggling up the stairs: two small exquisitely rich burkas disappearing along the first floor landing. Childish squeals of mischief and joy left in the air.......

“Move to seaward, you accused of Allah! Move!”

Her thoughts were clawed back to the dhow, the captain crashing the tiller over to avoid another boat on the crowded harbour. The woman instinctively ducked her head to avoid the heavy boom as it swung over her, the rusty cockerels squawked their raucous indignation, their heads straining through the latticework, relentless.

The collision avoided, the dhow continued on its way. The cacophony dying down to the occasional command by the captain or the cry of a seagull.

The woman's thoughts returned to Beit-al-Ajaib

  …………. laughing and giggling, girls of seven or eight. A door on the first floor slammed and all sounds of them disappeared. Silence. The woman smiled. She could see herself, a young woman, dressed plainly, unselfconsciously, her sexuality tantalisingly just out of reach, hidden beneath the thin veil of her clothing. She remembered standing alone in the foyer, looking around, perplexed. Asim came through a door to the left of the tapestry.


The woman started and looked around. Then, realising, was cold again. Alone again. Alone, rocking to and fro to the rythm of the sea. Alone, beside a rough-hewn coffin.






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