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Mainland, HK to Strengthen Financial Cooperation

Chinaese mainland will enhance cooperation with Hong Kong in improving currency policy, combating money laundering and handling money clearing, said Zhou Xiaochuan, governor of the People's Bank of China (PBOC), in Hong Kong Friday.

Addressing the HK Bank of China's seminar CEPA - A Catalyst for Sustainable Economic Growth in Hong Kong, Zhou said that with the continuing increase of foreign exchange reserves, the Mainland need to utilize Hong Kong's efficient financial infrastructure to conduct foreign exchange trade, which in the meantime will back Hong Kong's financial market.

"The Mainland is now learning from Hong Kong's experience to develop a RMB payments system and settlement system for yuan-denominated debt," said Zhou.

"The People's Bank of China has been cooperating closely with Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) to fight against fake currency and money laundering in view of the increasing circulation of RMB in Hong Kong," he added.

Zhou said the central government has noticed Hong Kong's willingness of handling RMB business and attached great importance to the matter with much positive study.

However, he said that under the current circumstance, PBOC must consider how to safely handle the overseas circulation of RMB.

"We welcome all the views on measures of standardizing RMB's overseas circulation," he stressed.

(Xinhua News Agency September 20, 2003)

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