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20 April 2017, 09:36 | Jan Cross
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In other words, before completion of the first term China will be on the hook of Trump.
The United States designed none of its major trading partners as a currency manipulator Friday, but put six countries, including China, Japan and South Korea, on its "monitoring list" for closer watch on their currency practices.
That said, China remained on a "Monitoring List" of major trading partners that merit close attention to their currency practices.
Trump declared on Wednesday that he would back away from a campaign promise to name China a currency manipulator, a move that would have created friction between the world's largest economies as they try to boost trade cooperation and address North Korea's nuclear threat.
"China and Germany have been included in the list of the countries, whose currency manipulations will be observed by analysts of the TreasuryDepartment", they said.
"Expanding trade in a way that is freer and fairer for all Americans requires that other economies avoid unfair currency practices, and we will continue to monitor this carefully", The Hill quoted Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin as saying in a statement.
The Korea International Trade Association welcomed the USA decision not to label South Korea a currency manipulator, calling it a "rational outcome". Such tariffs, though, could be overturned in a review by the World Trade Organization.
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South Korea met only two out of three criteria to become a currency manipulator - trade surplus, current account surplus and market intervention.
Beijing has not intervened in markets to weaken the value of its currency - the third criteria - and in fact has tried to keep the renminbi from falling further amid the country's relatively sluggish growth rate. Its surplus with the United States totaled $65 billion previous year.
"I think the United States chose to forego (labeling China a currency manipulator) this time because it wants China's cooperation on North Korea", said Takeshi Minami, chief economist at Norinchukin Research Institute in Tokyo.
Trump, in a Wall Street Journal interview, said China had not manipulated the yuan for months, while accusing nations that he didn't identify of devaluing their currencies and saying the United States dollar is getting too strong.
"The basic message is that Japan needs to expand its domestic demand and one can read this as them telling Japan to import more American goods", said Minami of the Norinchukin Research Institute. He has retreated from that position after meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Florida last weekend. The dollar's strength in the past two years has been a drag on US exports. The reversal by the Treasury department was one of the nearly half-a-dozen instances when Donald Trump or his administration have gone back on his poll campaign promises.
"The United States can not and will not bear the burden of an worldwide trading system that unfairly disadvantages our exports and unfairly advantages the exports of our trading partners through artificially distorted exchange rates", it said.
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