June 12, 2015 / 7:50 PM / 3 years ago

IMF team in China as part of currency basket review: official

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A team from the International Monetary Fund is visiting China as part of the global lender’s review over whether to include the Chinese yuan in its basket of currencies, an IMF official said on Friday.

A clerk counts Chinese 100 yuan banknotes at a branch of China Construction Bank in Nantong, Jiangsu province December 2, 2014. REUTERS/China Daily

An official said the IMF’s review of the Special Drawing Right (SDR) basket was “under way and the technical work is still at an early stage.”

“As part of the review, an IMF team is visiting China to have technical discussions,” the official said in an email.

Beijing is pushing to get the yuan included in the SDR basket, which could raise its standing in the global financial system and mark an important step in Beijing’s emergence as a global power.

IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde has said it is a matter of time before the yuan is included in the IMF’s unit of accounting, though U.S. officials have said the currency is not yet ready to join.

Beijing tightly controls the yuan’s movements and has strong capital controls, but it is pushing for increased use of the currency for trade and investment as part of a long-term strategic goal to reduce dependence on the dollar.

Reporting by Jason Lange; Editing by Meredith Mazzilli and Jonathan Oatis

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