(Edited from China Daily, Beijing) China will chart its own course on currency reform based on its needs, and external pressure will only delay the reform, Assistant Finance Minister Zhu Guangyao said on Tuesday.

Zhu made the remarks after the closing ceremony of the second round of the China-US Strategic and Economic Dialogue in Beijing. In his closing remarks, US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner welcomed a pledge by China’s top leaders to pursue currency reform as part of a broader agenda aimed at boosting domestic consumption and helping rebalance global growth.

(Edited from China Daily, Beijing) China will chart its own course on currency reform based on its needs, and external pressure will only delay the reform, Assistant Finance Minister Zhu Guangyao said on Tuesday.

Zhu made the remarks after the closing ceremony of the second round of the China-US Strategic and Economic Dialogue in Beijing. In his closing remarks, US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner welcomed a pledge by China’s top leaders to pursue currency reform as part of a broader agenda aimed at boosting domestic consumption and helping rebalance global growth.

“This is, of course, China’s choice,” he said.

President Hu Jintao said on Monday that China will continue to “steadily push forward the reform of the foreign exchange rate mechanism, under the principles of independent decision-making, controllability and gradual progress.” The remarks sparked market speculation that the government will let the currency rise in the near future.

Washington and foreign business groups have expressed concern over Beijing’s “indigenous innovation” policy, which they believe promotes Chinese technology by favoring domestically-developed products in government procurement.

Geithner said the US welcomes China’s commitment on submitting the revised offer as well as its commitment to “reducing barriers to foreign investment “.

“This is progress. It does not fully resolve our concerns, but it gives us a set of basic principles on which to move forward,” he said.

Both sides praised the dialogue as a vital tool for easing trade strains and promoting economic and political ties.

Clinton also said on Tuesday that China had made a “wise” choice by buying US debt but should eventually channel more investment domestically.

China is the world’s largest holder of US Treasuries, worth $895.2 billion. Chinese officials have prodded the Barack Obama administration to avoid pursuing fiscal policies that could erode the value of those holdings.

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