DP4375 Chinese Currency Controversies

Author(s): Barry Eichengreen
Publication Date: May 2004
Keyword(s): asia, china, exchange rate, monetary policy
JEL(s): F31
Programme Areas: International Macroeconomics, International Trade and Regional Economics
Link to this Page: cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=4375

This Paper reviews the controversy over China?s exchange rate regime. Placing the issue in the context of the literature on exit strategies, it argues that now is the best time for China to exit from its peg. Moving to a managed float would be in the country?s own interest; it would help the Chinese authorities to gain better control of domestic money and credit conditions. The Paper argues that the principal objections to this recommendation ? that the country?s banking system is weak, many of its state enterprises are bankrupt, and its capital account is not yet sufficiently open ? are unconvincing. Finally it assesses the likely impact on other Asian countries, concluding contrary to the conventional wisdom that these are likely to be minor at best.