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MNI China Daily Summary: Thursday, April 15


POLICY: Beijing and Washington should boost economic and trade cooperation on the basis of mutual benefits and equal treatment, Gao Feng, a spokesman for the Ministry of Commerce said Thursday, pointing to the growth of China-U.S. trade in Q1. China's exports to the U.S. rose 62.7% y/y while imports from the U.S. grew 57.9% in Q1, albeit compared to the early pandemic months of 2020. Imports of energy, agricultural products, automobiles, and auto parts all rose, said Gao, also noting the quick recovery of the two economies.

POLICY: China may re-open its international borders only after its vaccination rate has reached more than 70%, a Chinese official noted Thursday. "Only a country with a vaccination rate of 70% or 80% can open its border. Whoever gets the vaccination rate up first will have the first opportunity to open the border," said Wu Zunyou, Chief Epidemiologist of the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, according to China must improve its vaccination rate later this year before the onset winter, said Wu.

LIQUIDITY: The People's Bank of China (PBOC) injected CNY150 billion via one-year medium-term lending facilities (MLF) with the rate unchanged at 2.95%. This aims to roll over the CNY100 billion of MLFs maturing today and CNY56.1 billion in targetted medium-term lending facilities (TMLF) maturing on April 25, the PBOC said on its website. The PBOC also injected CNY10 billion via 7-day reverse repos. In total, the central bank net injected CNY50 billion given CNY10 billion repos mature today.

RATES: The seven-day weighted average interbank repo rate for depository institutions (DR007) decreased to 2.0331% from the close of 2.0349% on Wednesday, Wind Information showed. The overnight repo average increased to 1.8105% from the previous 1.8023%.

YUAN: The currency strengthened to 6.5322 against the dollar from 6.5334 on Wednesday. The PBOC set the dollar-yuan central parity rate lower for a third day at 6.5297, compared with the 6.5362 set on Wednesday.

BONDS: The yield on the 10-year China Government Bond was last at 3.2200%, up from Wednesday's close of 3.2100%, according to Wind Information.

STOCKS: The Shanghai Composite Index decreased 0.52% to 3,398.99, while the CSI300 fell 0.64% to 4,948.97. Hang Seng Index edged down 0.37% to 28,793.14.

FROM THE PRESS: China's Q1 growth may jump by 19.4% y/y, supported by active production, strong exports, a surge in housing-related purchases and a rebound in real estate investment, the Economic Information Daily reported citing economist Li Chao of Zheshang Securities. Li's double-digit growth predictions are shared by other economists, the Daily said. Macro policies are likely to be maintained as the recovery is fragile, with government providing strong fiscal support, abundant liquidity and continued support to SMEs, the newspaper said citing Wang Yiming, a member of the PBOC monetary policy committee.

China's consumption should continue to rise in the 2nd quarter as more pandemic restrictions over services are loosened and travel rebounds, while prices of raw materials and demand for electronics and cars are all rising, the China Securities Journal said citing Li Zhan, Chief economist of Zhongshan Securities. Rising wages and salaries and export demand also supported consumption, the newspaper said citing Fu Yifu, director of the Suning Financial Research Institute. Government promotion of international trade and expanding rural ecommerce also helped lift consumption, said the Journal.

China should speed up the vaccination process or risk being shut out of a re-opening world and also risk its ability to host the Winter Olympics next year, the Securities Times said citing Peng Wensheng, the chief economist with China International Capital Corp. Peng, who said he submitted his views in a recent group meeting with Premier Li Keqiang, suggested the government should assume more public-sector debt to cope with the pandemic, as letting the private sector rack up debt is unsustainable. Peng also told the Premier that annual growth may reach 9%, the Times reported.
MNI London Bureau | +44 203-865-3812 |
MNI London Bureau | +44 203-865-3812 |

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