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Friday, Oct. 12, 2012

Chinese IMF exec says isle rift can heal


International Monetary Fund Deputy Managing Director Min Zhu is "optimistic" that the Japan-China territorial dispute won't have long-term negative effects on relations between the two economic giants.

"We still remain optimistic. We believe that both governments will work out a beneficial solution for both as they did so in the past," Zhu said on the sidelines of the IMF-World Bank Group annual meetings in Tokyo.

"Uncertainty (for the global economy) remains the main risk, so we don't want to add any," Zhu said.

He was referring to the key theme of "uncertainty" in the IMF's latest World Economic Outlook report as the main factor contributing to the global economic slowdown.

The IMF opened the weeklong event with the release of the report, which includes a downward revision of its forecast for real gross domestic product growth in China this year to 7.8 percent from 8.0 percent.

Zhu said this is "not necessarily a bad number" as it reflects government efforts to "cool down the overheated economy and to try to bring inflation down."

A native of China and a former deputy governor of the People's Bank of China, Zhu emphasized that the Chinese economy will stabilize, with the IMF forecasting growth for 2013 at around 8.2 percent.

Meanwhile, Zhu said the IMF has observed a shift from "tightening to easing" in China's macroeconomic policies.

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