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Duncan Levesley takes a look at RMB trade settlement

An increasing number of firms are getting in on the use of RMB in trade settlement. Most major banks – including CBBC members HSBC, Standard Chartered, RBS and Citibank – are now helping exporters and importers across the world to settle a rapidly increasing number of trade deals in RMB. Some RMB deals are not even directly involving a Chinese party. Travelex also made a splash this month by announcing they will begin to allow firms to trade directly with China in RMB. While there remains a heavy debate about when, and if, the RMB will become fully convertible or a reserve currency, almost all commentators agree that trade settlement will continue to grow.

Thomas Poon, Senior Vice-President of Business Planning and Strategy at HSBC, is particularly confident. He suggests: “I can see half of China’s trade settled in RMB by 2015,” adding that this would mean RMB settled trade is likely to exceed US$2 trillion within four years, and that the RMB is likely to soon become the world’s third biggest currency. If fully convertible, it would already be the third most traded on FX markets.

For more information please contact duncan.levesley@cbbc.org

STANDFIRST: Education

Giles Blackburne provides an overview of China’s education reform plan

According to the Outline of China’s National Plan for Medium and Long-term Education Reform and Development (2010-2020), the development of China’s higher education sector will continue to play a key role in China’s modernization drive. However, China will need to raise the quality of its higher education if it wants to achieve the aspiration of having world-class universities. Looking ahead, China’s universities will place a greater emphasis on career development and entrepreneurship education and will revamp their post-graduate programmes to make them more accessible and relevant to national needs. In particular there will be a focus on the practical application of scientific research and its rapid integration into production. Research into philosophy and social sciences, however, will also receive attention.

Vocational education has also been recognised in the plan as a key channel to boost economic growth and promote employment. The Chinese government plans to expand vocational education and incorporate it into its socio-economic development and industrial development programmes. Improvements in the quality of teaching and the development of standards are a priority, along with making sure, through greater collaboration with industry, that student learning is employment-oriented. There also will be a major drive to improve vocational education in rural areas.

In China, further education is viewed as part of a lifelong learning system for those who have completed school education. The proposed strategy is to develop non-degree further education and also expand diploma-granting further education. Whilst further education for adults of working age will be recognised and incentivised, there will also be an emphasis on the provision of further education for the elderly and financially vulnerable.

For more information, please contact giles.blackburne@cbbc.org

 

 

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