China is “actively considering” buying up to $50bn of International Monetary Fund bonds, the country’s State Administration of Foreign Exchange has said.
John Lipsky, IMF first deputy managing director, confirmed the Chinese proposal, which follows one by Russia to buy $10bn (€7.1bn, £6.2bn) in IMF bonds.
Friday’s statement by China said any investment would be made according to its usual criteria of “safety and reasonable returns”, but made no mention of Beijing’s wish for more power in IMF decision-making, in return for financial support.
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Safe, which controls almost $2,000bn of China’s foreign exchange reserves, added it was ready to help the IMF explore more ways to raise finance.
Mr Lipsky said the Chinese and Russian proposals were part of a commitment made during the London G20 summit in April to augment IMF resources by $500bn, and that the IMF “absolutely welcomes” the commitments.
The IMF expects to submit a proposal in the next few weeks that would allow it to raise money through issuing notes or bonds.