| DUESSELDORF, Germany, March 29
DUESSELDORF, Germany, March 29 A decision by
Germany and China to make Frankfurt a European hub for financial
transactions in the Chinese currency will give new momentum to
trade between the two economic powers, Chinese President Xi
Jinping and a German minister said on Saturday.
In a speech to politicians and business leaders in the city
of Duesseldorf, Xi said setting up the hub for the renminbi in
Germany "represents an important step on the road of the
internationalisation of our currency," according to a
The Bundesbank and the People's Bank of China signed an
agreement on Friday to facilitate transactions in the Chinese
currency in Frankfurt and to cooperate more closely in clearing
and settlement arrangements of renminbi payments.
Up to now, transactions in China's currency, the renminbi or
yuan, have been impractical for all but very large European
companies that are able to involve China's central bank in a
deal, because the renminbi is not freely convertible.
German Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel said having the
clearing bank in Frankfurt would help trade between the two
"Our goal is an economic partnership of equals," Gabriel
The Chinese leader's first visit to Germany since becoming
president last year saw the signing of business deals that will
add to trade that was worth about 140 billion euros last year.
Annual trade flows between China, the world's second-biggest
economy, and Germany, Europe's largest, exceed Chinese trade
with France, Britain and Italy combined.
Xi said China would pursue its course of reforms but would
not simply follow the "old road of the industrial nations" but
would rather embrace sustainable development, even if this meant
He said Germany and China could intensify their relationship
by buying stakes in each others' companies and said trade
disputes should be resolved through dialogue.
Xi, accompanied by a 200-strong business delegation, travels
to Brussels on Sunday.
(Writing by Madeline Chambers; Editing by Angus MacSwan)