November 6, 2013
With deals from London to Singapore, China is seeking a greater role for its yuan currency in global markets to challenge the hegemony of the almighty dollar.
The most attention-grabbing reform planned for Shanghai’s new free trade zone is free convertibility of the yuan — also known as the renminbi, or “people’s money” — an unprecedented change which would allow greater use of the currency.
But no timetable has been specified, and a true contest between Mao Zedong, Communist China’s founding father whose face is emblazoned on most yuan notes, and Benjamin Franklin on the $100 bill will be years in the making.
For decades the US has benefited to the tune of trillions of dollars-worth of free credit from the greenback’s role as the default global reserve unit.
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