“BRICS” to talk economic coordination, not yuan: China

Leaders from five of the world’s top emerging economies will discuss a coordinated stance on economic issues such as commodity price fluctuations, but the yuan’s exchange rate is off the agenda, a senior Chinese diplomat said on Saturday.

The mid-April “BRICS” summit will gather leaders from China, Russia, India, Brazil and South Africa in the southern Chinese beach resort of Sanya.

The summit is unlikely to achieve much concrete, though it will give the world’s big rising economies a venue to coordinate views on global financial reforms, commodity prices and other shared concerns.

“The BRICS countries have similar concerns or stances on important questions like the global economy, international finance and development,” Assistant Chinese Foreign Minister Wu Hailong told a news conference.

“We hope all sides can strengthen coordination and mutual cooperation on reform of the international currency system, commodity price fluctuations, climate change and sustainable development,” he added.

China hoped the summit would in particular be able to coalesce views on commodity price fluctuations ahead of the G20 summit in Cannes, France, later this year, Wu said.

“This is a topic at the G20 summit in Cannes and … the leaders of the five countries will exchange views on this,” he added. “We hope that the five countries’ leaders can have a joint stance on this issue and reach a broad consensus.”

But Wu said the Chinese currency’s exchange rate would not be talked about at the Sanya summit. Some countries say China keeps the yuan artificially undervalued to help boost Chinese exports.