China, France agree on monetary reform: French presidency

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China and France reached a "true convergence of views" on reform of the global monetary system during talks between their two presidents Friday, a senior French presidential advisor said.

"There is a true convergence of views between China and France on the aims to be achieved and the route and means necessary to achieve this reform," the official told reporters after talks between French President Nicolas Sarkozy and his visiting Chinese counterpart Hu Jintao.

The official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the two leaders also agreed to hold a gathering of monetary experts in China at an unspecified date, "probably in the spring" in early 2011.

China "gave its agreement to the idea that a seminar with top experts be chaired by France but in a Chinese town," the official said.

Sarkozy was seeking China's backing for his plans to reform the global financial system when he takes over the G20 presidency at a summit in South Korea next week.

The French official gave no further details of the measures France plans to push with China's backing. Sarkozy has previously called for measures to end volatility of exchange rates and commodities prices.

Exchange rates are a sensitive issue for the Group of 20 (G20) economic powers. The United States has accused China of deliberately holding the value of its currency to protect its exports.

In the talks between Hu and Sarkozy "the other priorities for the French presidency of the G20 were also discussed, as well as the larger issue of cooperation between China and the whole of Europe," the official added.

© 2010 AFP

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