China Hoping World Leader Meeting Will Boost Confidence

BEIJING (AP) - China is looking to next month's meeting of world
leaders in London to boost confidence and global coordination in
dealing with the world financial crisis, its foreign minister said
Saturday.

The G-20 meeting, scheduled for April 2, will bring together
Chinese President Hu Jintao and leaders of the world's major
economies in a quest for ways to stabilize financial markets,
lessen fears of a lengthy recession, and begin overhauling the
global financial system.

The summit should "play a role in boosting the public's
confidence," Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi said at a news
conference held on the sidelines of the annual legislative session.

"In this regard we are willing to work with the United States
and other countries in the world to weather the storm and make
joint efforts to tackle the difficulties brought by the financial
crisis," Yang said.

China has so far appeared reluctant to offer major cash
injections to the International Monetary Fund and other global
financial bodies, and Yang offered no specifics on what proposals
Beijing would bring to London.

Instead, he reiterated Beijing's contention that the biggest
help China can offer the global economy was to keep its own
financial house in running order.

"To maintain the steady and relatively fast development in
China is in itself the biggest contribution China can make to
international cooperation in meeting the financial crisis," Yang
said.

China was also helping by aiding developing nations, especially
those in Africa, and reminding countries of their similar
commitments, Yang said. He also said the recent visit to Europe by
a Chinese trade delegation led by Commerce Minister Chen Deming
that resulted in the signing of deals potentially worth $15 billion
was beneficial.

"It is imperative for all countries to put the needs of people
first and to take a down-to-earth approach in pursuing economic
development, social progress and international equity and
justice," Yang said.

In the wide-ranging news conference Yang said China would
continue to invest its nearly $2 trillion in foreign exchange
holdings on the basis of ensuring security, liquidity and
increasing value. Hundreds of billions of those holdings have been
invested in U.S. Treasury and U.S. policy-makers have sought
assurances that Beijing will keep buying American government debt.

Yang, who will visit Washington in preparation for the London
summit, said relations with the new U.S. administration of
President Barack Obama had gotten off to a "good start" and the
two countries' leaders had found ample common ground in their phone
conversations.


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