With booming exports, China opened 2007 with a strong
trade surplus that is a 67-per cent in January, a development
that is likely to increase pressure on Beijing to allow
its currency to float freely.
January 2007, China had a $15.9 billion trade surplus,
compared with $9.5 billion a year ago. China''s trade
surplus with the European Union reached $26.4 billion
in January, while that with the US totalled $23.41 billion.
China denies it, the West has long said that the country
keeps its currency, the yuan, deliberately undervalued
to keep its exports low-priced. Its overall trade suplus
for 2006 hit a new record of $177.47, up 74 per cent
present China only allows the yuan to trade in a very
narrow field against the dollar, but it has long pledged
to allow the yuan to trade more freely as and when this
is possible. China says it needs to be cautious about
this to prevent unsettling its economy.
Friday, the G7 finance minister called on China to increase
its currency flexibility.
the end of their meeting at Essen, Germany, they said
China needed to speed-up efforts to improve the exchange
rate flexibility of its yuan currency.
G7 meeting, which began on Friday evening, brought together
the finance leaders of Canada, Britain, France, Germany,
Italy, Japan and the US. China, which recently leapfrogged
Britain to become the world''s fourth largest economy
was invited to the talks despite not being a G7 member.
finance minister, Jin Renqing, assured the G7 ministers
that the country would "continue to strengthen
addition to China, other non-G7 nations in attendance
at the meeting were Brazil, India, Mexico, Russia and