BEIJING — The U.S. has pushed China once again toward agreeing in principle on adopting a more market-oriented exchange rate, but with no firm details on how or when that might happen.
In closing two days of top-level trade and economic talks in Beijing, U.S. Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew said China had pledged to further ease its firm controls on its currency — long a thorn in the U.S.-China trade relationship.
“China is making preparations to adopt greater transparency including on foreign exchange, which will accelerate the move to a more market-based exchange rate,” Lew said in a news conference at the end of the Strategic and Economic Dialogue, or SED, an annual set of discussions on key Sino-U.S. issues.
On Wednesday, the first day of discussions, China’s finance minister said his country has no plans for additional economic stimulus measures. China’s economy, largely powered through aggressive government spending programs, has been credited with bolstering the global economy through the crisis that began in 2008. Minister Lou Jiwei said its now up to the U.S. to step up and work as a global growth engine.
Lou said that China believes the global economic recovery is still in a critical transition point, and the Chinese government does not yet believe that it can adopt a completely free-market-based exchange rate. China has credited its freeze on the yuan’s value at the start of the economic meltdown for helping this country, and the region, survive and thrive through turmoil. But it has retained a fairly strict peg since, leading to renewed calls from the U.S. and other trade partners that an unnaturally fixed currency provides China with an unfair trade advantage.
This round of talks, the sixth such yearly meetings, comes at a time when U.S.-China relations are mired in problematic issues. The two have been embroiled in multiple spats during the past year, including charges and counter-charges of cyber-espionage.
Lew led the American delegation in Beijing, accompanied for some of his trip by Secretary of State John Kerry. The teams discussed everything from the illegal wildlife trade to currency rates — a perpetual burr in the bilateral relationship.
As it has gained in global economic power, China has become increasingly petulant about bilateral issues. The underlying message for these meetings from China’s official media has been to place the burden of compromise on the U.S.
“It is the United States that should take the initiative to demonstrate to the world that, even facing negativity and potential alienation in bilateral relations, the two powers still stick to the dialogue mechanism to ensure that cooperation and consultation define the overall relationship,” the official Xinhua new service wrote in an editorial about the talks.
During the opening ceremony for the talks, Chinese President Xi Jinping urged cooperation, but did not get into specifics.
“China and the United States’ interests are deeply interconnected. Cooperation will lead to win-win results while confrontation will hurt both,” he said.
In addition to a note of agreement in principle about currency, the SED also agreed to strengthen economic policy cooperation between the two countries. Both sides said that they will work on “fostering an open, transparent, and non-discriminatory environment for trade and investment.”
China, meanwhile, promised to further deepen its commitment to market-oriented economics and the reform of its state-owned enterprise system. China also used the platform to further its pitch for technology transfers from the U.S. for non-military and non-government use, and reiterated a commitment that domestic demand will become a key driver of its economy.
@chanel and @pharrell dropped what’s being dubbed as the world’s most exclusive sneakers yesterday. The Adidas Originals NMD Hu, which Williams designed in collaboration with Chanel and @adidasoriginals, has a waiting list of over 120K people who pre-registered online at chanelatcolette.fr –– and only 500 pairs are on sale. The singer predicted the resale value of the shoes could reach $40K. Read the full interview on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdfashion (📷: Dominique Maître)
@imanshumpert is diving deeper into his creative endeavors and relaunching his clothing line, Post 90s, and is helping to raise money for the hurricane victims in St. Maarten with a jersey he’s designed with his brother. The Cleveland Cavaliers player talked to WWD about kneeling during the national anthem, working with fashion brands and how he wants to be more than an @nba player. Read the interview on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: George Chinese)
Not only does #TheProfit return to CNBC tonight, but @marcuslemonis has launched @shopmarcus, a new shopping and lifestyle retail experience in Aspen and Chicago, with more locations to come. The retail stores offer in-store stylists and a variety of contemporary womenswear selections.
“It’s life, I’m going to face it,” @mingxi11 sighed. “I fell, but you know, I think the most important thing is that I get back up. I had the love, the help from my sister — the girl next to me Gizele [Oliveira] — she’s so nice. When I went backstage everybody was trying to comfort me like ‘Oh Ming, it’s OK.’ I’m really, really touched. I think it’s them who gave me the courage to go back on stage for the finale,” Xi told WWD of her fall at the @victoriassecret fashion show. (📷: David Fisher) #wwdfashion #vsfashionshow #victoriassecret
@louisvuitton tapped @therealpeterlindbergh for its latest city-centric photo book, which is part of a series called Fashion Eye. The primarily black and white book captures the spirit of Berlin in 57 images shot between 1989 and 2019. “Berlin is an inspiration for me, more than a city. I mean @millajovovich is simply Berlin!” said Lindbergh. #wwdfashion
“You know, I think audiences expect a certain performance so I have to deliver to them what they’re expecting to a certain degree. But I’m also a different actor and a different person, I have my own spin on the character,” says @noahegalvin of his takeover of the leading role in “Dear Evan Hansen” following the departure of @bensplatt, who originated the role. Read WWD’s interview with the 23-year-old actor on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
For pre-fall 2018, @etro created richly-colored wonderland, using tapestries, textiles and wallpapers from the Eastern world at large. The line featured floral and graphic prints and jacquard motifs, like this two-piece look featured here. #wwdfashion (📷: Giovanna Pavesi)
@kith is moving into children’s. The men’s and women’s streetwear brand has launched Kidset, a Kith kids line located in New York at 64 Bleecker Street. The line includes mini versions of staple Kith pieces like the Astor bomber jacket and the Kith box logo sweatshirts, along with a wall that can display up to 120 pairs of shoes from @adidas, @newbalance, @timberland and more. #wwdfashion
“I just wanted to create this fully rounded character, but I do think what excited me most was just the opportunity to give a group of people representation that I feel needs it. I like to do characters in projects that stand for something and Karolina definitely does, so that was really exciting to me,” @ginnygardner says of her new role in @hulu’s “The Runaways.” Gardner plays Karolina Dean, a queer superhero, which is a rarity for @marvel. Read more about Gardner’s character on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @dandoperalski)