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Kenya’s Rapidly Devaluing Currency Pushes Up Debt Servicing Costs, Particularly to China

The cost to repay Kenya's dollar-denominated loans is getting more expensive, literally by the day. The National Treasury reported that the plunging value of the shilling since the beginning of the year has increased the cost to service dollar-denominated loans by ...

Currencies, Old and New, Set to Top Agenda at Next Week’s BRICS Summit in Johannesburg

The idea of creating a brand new currency under the auspices of the BRICS countries is "ridiculous," according to the former Goldman Sachs economist who coined the acronym for the five countries. Jim O'Neil echoed the sentiments of a number of ...

Plunging Chinese Trade Data Rattles Global South Stocks and Currencies

From Chile to South Africa to the Philippines, stock markets across the developing world fell sharply on Tuesday after Chinese customs authorities released worse-than-expected trade data. Chinese exports plunged 14.5% in July compared to the same time last year, the ...

New Development Bank Wants to Finance More Projects Using Local Currencies Rather Than the U.S. Dollar

The New Development Bank (aka the "BRICS Bank") wants to reduce the use of the U.S. dollar when it finances projects in developing countries. The head of the Shanghai-based lender, Dilma Rousseff, told the bank's annual meeting this week that the ...

The Uphill Journey to a BRICS Currency

The South African government announced in May that discussions around setting up a common currency will be on the agenda of the BRICS summit in August. Calls for the bloc, made up of Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, to work together to boost non-dollar trade have ...

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

Joint Battlefield Training to Raise Pressure in South China Sea

The U.S. military will reportedly introduce joint combat training with the Philippines in June. Major General Marcus Evans, commander of the U.S. 25th Infantry Division, told the Associated Press that the training would increase the Philippine army’s ability to fight in challenging jungle conditions.
The training will run from June 1 to 10. At Manila’s request, the training will be held in Philippine territory for the first time. It will involve about 2,000 people ...

South Africa Urges Caution on BRICS Currency as Global Yuan Use Creeps Up

The BRICS group (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) will discuss the feasibility of a joint currency at an upcoming summit in Johannesburg in August. Naledi Pandor, South Africa’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, acknowledged that scheduling the discussion was prompted by calls from member states to move away ...

China: Africa’s Debt Problems Due to “Dollar Hegemony”

The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs introduced a new talking point aimed at countering accusations by U.S. legislators and other stakeholders that Beijing engages in predatory lending in Africa. For the first time on Friday, the Ministry referenced "dollar hegemony" ...

China’s Newest Talking Point on Debt: The U.S. Dollar is to Blame

As China faces increasing criticism around perceptions that it is holding up debt relief processes, its state media seems to be trying out new talking points in its messaging on the issue to Global South audiences, as seen in a recent article in the state-owned tabloid Global Times: ...

Getting Currency Swaps Right: How China is Filling the Void Left by the West

By Kevin Gallagher, Marina Zucker-Marques and Barbara Fritz A recent World Bank paper­ – widely echoed by financial outlets – has raised concerns about a supposed Chinese “emerging system of cross-border bailouts”, composed mostly of currency swap agreements. To the authors, Chinese swaps are opaque and costly, ...

China is Increasingly Determined to “De-Dollarize” Its International Trade

When Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim went to Malaysia's parliament this week to brief lawmakers on his recent trip to China, he emphasized his discussions with President Xi Jinping about transitioning away from relying solely on the U.S. dollar for trade. “There ...
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