The International Monetary Fund said it will start identifying the yuan in its official foreign-exchange reserves database starting in October, advancing China’s push for a bigger international role of its currency, which is also known as the renminbi.
The listing will enable IMF members “to record as official reserves their holdings of renminbi-denominated external assets that are readily available for meeting balance of payments financing needs,” the Washington-based lender said Friday in a statement.
The change will be reflected in the IMF’s fourth-quarter survey on the currency composition of official foreign-exchange reserves, known as Cofer, that covers a total of 96 countries. That survey will be published at the end of March, 2017.
China is seeking a more prominent role in the global economy and showcased its stature when it hosted a meeting of the Group of 20 last month. However, the start of the year has also been marred by steep stock-market losses spurred in part by concerns over slowing Chinese growth.
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China reported data on its official reserves to the IMF for the first time in September in an effort to speed up the inclusion of the yuan in its basket of reserve currencies — a move that was approved by the IMF executive board in December. The yuan will be included in the Special Drawing Rights basket of reserve currencies starting in October, alongside the dollar, the euro, the Japanese yen, and the British pound.
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