Date
14 December 2017
Alan Greenspan believes China will keep the renminbi exchange rate at a low level in order to control the unemployment rate. Photo: Bloomberg
Alan Greenspan believes China will keep the renminbi exchange rate at a low level in order to control the unemployment rate. Photo: Bloomberg

The Big Picture: RENMINBI TO APPRECIATE

Alan Greenspan is no longer the US Federal Reserve chairman, but his views on the global economy are still highly valued and much sought after. 

In an interview with the financial news website Sina.com last Friday, the retired central banker gave his thoughts on the Chinese economy and the renminbi, in particular.

He believes that despite recent turbulence in its exchange rate, the Chinese currency will continue to appreciate in the long run, although at a slower pace.

However, the Chinese government will keep the renminbi exchange rate at a low level in order to control the unemployment rate, he said.

Greenspan also said China should let inefficient companies go bankrupt, noting that “creative destruction” is the only way to generate strong productive forces and keep the economy healthy.

He urged China to encourage investment in advanced technologies, as the country is relying too much on imported technologies.

Former premier Zhu Rongji said in the late 1990s that market freedom is necessary for economic growth, Greenspan noted, adding that the Chinese leader did not like state-owned enterprises (SOEs) because they were poorly managed.

The country’s current leadership has pledged to promote the market’s decisive role in the economy and vowed to pursue the reform of SOEs through the introduction of a diversified ownership structure.

Greenspan also warned about the potential risk from the country’s fast-growing shadow banking sector, which is said to be dealing with assets worth 15-20 trillion yuan (US$2.4-3.2 trillion), the report said.

Meanwhile, the former Fed chief said it’s still uncertain whether the US economy has recovered as unemployment is still higher than the natural rate of 5 percent while the property market is picking up slowly.

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MY/JP/CG

 

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