Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Monday, March 25th, 2019

China Forms New Economic Team as President Xi Kicks off Second Term

China Forms New Economic Team  as President Xi Kicks off Second Term

BEIJING - China elevated a key confidante of President Xi Jinping to one of the top positions in government on Monday as Beijing cracks down on riskier financing and a debt build-up that may pose systemic risks to the world’s second-largest economy.
The endorsement of Liu He as a vice premier by the country’s largely rubber-stamp parliament also comes as the United States presses China to cut its trade surplus by $100 billion. Harvard-educated Liu, 66, was the most prominent envoy to visit Washington recently to prevent the outbreak of a trade war. While most of the personnel changes on the government’s economic team were widely anticipated, the choice of Yi Gang as the new head of the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) was unexpected.
Yi had been a vice governor of PBOC and a protege of outgoing chief Zhou Xiaochuan. His appointment was seen as pointing to continuity in monetary policy even as one of the world’s biggest central banks was gaining considerable new regulatory powers.
Yi will have a weighty first test - the U.S. Federal Reserve is expected to raise interest rates on March 21, a day after China’s annual parliament ends, and markets are keen to see if the PBOC follows with a modest move of its own. (Reuters)