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Geithner vows to deepen US-China economic ties
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US Treasury Secretary-designate Timothy Geithner vowed in a document released on Thursday to deepen US-China economic relationship which he termed as "one of our most important relationships".

"The US-China economic relationship presents significant challenges, but also opportunities. It is one of our most important relationships. There are many specific issues in our economic relationship that require our careful and prompt attention," Geithner wrote to the Senate Finance Committee in documents released on Thursday.

"If confirmed, I am committed to a deep engagement between our senior economic officials to address differences and effectively resolve problems on these topics," he said.

However, he also attacked China on the so-called currency manipulation issue.

"President Obama -- backed by the conclusions of a broad range of economists -- believes that China is manipulating its currency," he said in the document, adding Obama has pledged as president "to use aggressively all the diplomatic avenues open to him to seek change in China's currency practices."

Meanwhile, Geithner said the Obama administration looks forward to a productive economic dialogue with the Chinese government on a number of short-and long-term issues.

"The (Chinese currency) Yuan is certainly an important piece of that discussion, but given the crisis the immediate focus needs to be on the broader issue of stabilizing domestic demand in China and the US," he said.

The latest figures showed that China's growth in 2008 was nine percent, a full 4 percentage points lower than in the previous year.

"Because China accounts for such a large fraction of the world economy, a further slowdown in China would lead to a substantial fall in world growth and delay recovery from the crisis," stated Geithner.

"Therefore, the immediate goal should be for us to convince China to adopt a more aggressive stimulus package as we do our part to try to pass a stimulus package here at home," said the treasury secretary-designate, whose nomination was approved on an 18-5 vote in the Senate Finance Committee Thursday.

The nomination was expected to win approval by the full senate in the next few days.

(Xinhua News Agency January 23, 2009)

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