China Power

Currency Pressures

The Obama administration is caught between a rock and a hard place over China’s currency.

The Obama administration seems determined to consolidate the apparently better atmosphere in Sino-US ties, delaying the much-anticipated currency report due April 15.

The administration is under heavy pressure to cite China as a currency manipulator, but the announcement by US Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner yesterday is perhaps no surprise following the announcement that Chinese President Hu Jintao will be attending a nuclear summit meeting in Washington just a couple of days before the scheduled release.

Meanwhile, the chairman of the US Senate Finance Committee and the ranking Republican have called for an investigation into Chinese barriers to US imports.

It's going to be interesting to see how (and if) an Obama administration determined to improve ties with China can resist increasingly vocal domestic pressure from lobbyists and lawmakers feeling the heat from constituents as November's mid-term elections approach.