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Global Times: Trump Adviser Hints at Reduced Criticism of China on Its Currency

Global Times, a subsidiary of People’s Daily, the Chinese Communist Party’s official newspaper, published a report on March 13 saying that the Trump administration may reduce its criticism of China for manipulating its currency.

Global Times quoted Steve Schwarzman, chairman of Trump’s strategic and policy forum as saying in an interview on CNN, “I don’t think that there’s going to be issues regarding China as a currency manipulator and some of the other things.”

Global Times also cited Bloomberg and Singapore’s leading Chinese newspaper Zaobo, “While Trump said on the campaign trail that he would label the U.S.’s biggest trading partner a currency cheater and seek to fix large trade imbalances, some administration officials and advisers are softening their rhetoric.”  Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said last month that he wants to undertake a regular review of foreign-exchange markets to determine if China is cheating, adding that no announcement on currency manipulation would come before the Treasury’s April report.

The Global Times quoted Schwarzman, who is also chief executive officer of the alternative-investment management firm, The Blackstone Group LP, and who has close ties to China, “They have a certain equanimity that these are early days and there’s a learning curve for Trump.”

What Global Times did not mention was an anecdote in the Bloomberg report about China’s President Xi Jiinping, who apparently told Schwarzman that, “After three years of doing my job I know much, much more than I did my first day.” Schwarzman added that Xi said, “That’s the nature of being president of any country.”

Global Times, March 13, 2017
Zaobo, March 13, 2017