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Germany Welcomes China’s Support for G20 Debt Restructuring Framework

Germany has welcomed a show of support from China for the G20 debt restructuring framework for poorer countries in a joint statement after their financial dialog in Frankfurt over the weekend.

“We welcome the fact that the Chinese side is also committed to this in our Joint Statement, because solutions are inconceivable without China as such an important player in world politics,” German Finance Minister Christian Lindner said Sunday, after his meeting with Chinese Vice Premier He Lifeng.

Neither provided further details on the rules for the restructuring plans and the joint statement did not give specifics.

A source told Reuters in April that China had been expected to drop its demand for multilateral development banks to share losses alongside other creditors in sovereign debt restructurings for poor nations.

It was not immediately clear Sunday whether that had happened.

Some countries such as Germany have argued that with China being by far the largest creditor for many highly indebted countries in Africa and Asia, Beijing should make concessions to speed debt restructuring.

During Sunday’s talks, Germany and China also showed their determination to expand market access opportunities between both countries.

“This creates opportunities on both sides for more responsible trade and investment,” German Finance Minister Christian Lindner said Sunday.

China is willing to work with Germany to further “mutually beneficial” cooperation, and inject more “positive energy” into their partnership, the official Xinhua news agency reported on Sunday, citing He.

High-ranking representatives of the countries’ central banks and supervisory authorities attended the third financial dialog between Berlin and Beijing, as well as companies’ representatives.

“It is important for me to emphasize that for the first time in the history of the Financial Dialogue we have established a Financial Roundtable with representatives of important financial institutions and private companies,” Lindner said.

Lindner proposed to increase the frequency of financial dialogs between China and Germany, to have these meetings annually instead of every two years, as both countries want faster progress. “In politics, two years is a long time, but in financial matters, two years is an eternity,” Lindner said.

The meeting took place in Frankfurt, as Germany want to further strengthen this city as a European hub for financial services, the finance minister said.

Source: Reuters