The renminbi (Ab.: RMB; simplified Chinese: 人民币; traditional Chinese: 人民幣; pinyin: rénmínbì; literally: "people's currency"; sign: 元; code: CNY) is the official currency of the People's Republic of China. The yuan (Chinese: 元; pinyin: yuán) is the basic unit of the renminbi, but is also used to refer to the Chinese currency generally, especially in international contexts where "Chinese yuan" is widely used to refer to the renminbi. The distinction between the terms renminbi and yuan is similar to that between sterling and pound, which respectively refer to the British currency and its primary unit. One yuan is subdivided into 10 jiao (Chinese: 角; pinyin: jiǎo), and a jiao in turn is subdivided into 10 fen (Chinese: 分; pinyin: fēn). The renminbi is issued by the People's Bank of China, the monetary authority of China.Until 2005, the value of the renminbi was pegged to the US dollar. As China pursued its transition from central planning to a market economy, and increased its participation in foreign trade, the renminbi was devalued to increase the competitiveness of Chinese industry. It has previously been claimed that the renminbi's official exchange rate was undervalued by as much as 37.5% against its purchasing power parity. More recently, however, appreciation actions by the Chinese government, as well as quantitative easing measures taken by the American Federal Reserve and other major central banks, have caused the renminbi to be within as little as 8% of its equilibrium value by the second half of 2012. Since 2006, the renminbi exchange rate has been allowed to float in a narrow margin around a fixed base rate determined with reference to a basket of world currencies. The Chinese government has announced that it will gradually increase the flexibility of the exchange rate. As a result of the rapid internationalization of the renminbi, it became the world's 8th most traded currency in 2013, and 5th by 2015.On 1 October 2016, the RMB became the first emerging market currency to be included in the IMF's special drawing rights basket, the basket of currencies used by the IMF (reserve currency).
If a temporary trade agreement between China and the US can be signed later this month, and includes a trade-off of US tariff reduction and a stronger CNY-USD exchange rate, that should boost the renminbi and Chinese stock prices in the short run.
Opinion - The Coronavirus crisis has created a welcome opportunity for us to reassess the relationship between China and Africa on several levels - trade, supply chains, excessive borrowing and predatory lending, racism towards Africans.