Geithner and China's Wang to meet on Sunday
GYEONGJU, South Korea
GYEONGJU, South Korea (Reuters) - Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner on Sunday will travel to Qingdao, China, to meet with Chinese Vice Premier Wang Qishan, a senior Treasury official said.
Geithner and Wang, who are designated as special representatives of their respective presidents on U.S.-China economic issues, will discuss "important bilateral economic matters," the official said, without elaborating.
The stop-off in China comes at the end of Geithner's trip to the Group of 20 finance ministers and central bank governors meetings here, where officials agreed to refrain from competitive currency devaluations and reduce current account imbalances.
The United States has been pressuring China to allow its yuan to rise more rapidly in response to market forces.
Last week, Geithner delayed a semi-annual report to U.S. lawmakers on whether China manipulates its yuan for a trade advantage, choosing instead to press the issue at multilateral meetings including the Gyeongju finance leaders meeting and a G20 leaders summit next month in Seoul.
Geithner said China in Gyeongju was "very supportive" of finding a multilateral solution to reducing global trade imbalances in the G20 meetings.
He reiterated that he wants to see China to accelerate its move toward a market-determined exchange rate.
"China is well into a very promising and very ambitious program of domestic reforms to strengthen domestic growth because China recognized that it cannot afford to rely as it has in the past on such an export-dependent model for growth," Geithner told a news conference. "We want to see that progress continue."
"Of course as a part of that, it's not ready for its exchange rate to rise more rapidly in response to market forces," Geithner added of China.
The U.S. House of Representatives earlier this month passed legislation that aims to increase pressure on China by treating currency undervaluation as a subsidy. It will authorize the U.S. Commerce Department to apply countervailing duties to offset any price advantage from currencies.
Geithner made a similar stop-off in China on the way home from a trip to India in April, which also took place when the Treasury had delayed its currency report to allow Beijing more time to move on the yuan.
(Reporting by David Lawder; Editing by Ed Lane and Tomasz Janowski)
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