| 24 February 2024, Saturday |

Yellen to seek clarity from China on COVID, property

When she talks with the head of China’s central bank on Monday, U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen will press for clarification on China’s intentions to remove its COVID-19 restrictions and address issues in its real estate industry when she talks with the head of China’s central bank on Monday, Treasury sources said on Sunday.

In Bali, ahead of a summit of the Group of 20 major countries, the officials told reporters that it was crucial for the top economic officials from the two biggest economies in the world to directly address global concerns and learn more about one another’s political platforms.

Yellen is prepared to discuss with Peoples Bank of China Governor Yi Gang the outlook for U.S. inflation and growth, but will likely leave monetary policy plans to the Federal Reserve, the officials said.

The administration of President Joe Biden has long raised concerns about the resilience of supply chains in China that have been hit by repeated COVID-19 lockdowns and growing national security restrictions.


In India last week, Yellen made a case for closer ties between the world’s two largest democracies, with India taking on a “friend-shoring” role as a trusted supplier and counterweight to China.

Yellen’s meeting with Yi, first reported by Reuters, comes on the same day that Biden will meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping in an effort to limit a recent downward spiral of the superpowers’ relations.

The Treasury officials said they do not plan to offer advice to China on its COVID restrictions or its property sector woes, but to understand Chinese officials’ approach so they can better interpret the impact of policy changes.

Yellen also will also meet with French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire and new Italian Minister of Economy and Finance Giancarlo Giorgetti. Among key discussion topics for these meetings will be their outlook for energy challenges during what is expected to be a difficult winter for Europe, the officials said.

Yellen also will urge her European counterparts to keep up strong fiscal support for Ukraine in a transparent and predictable way, the officials said.

  • Reuters