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PBoC lifts curb on outbound renminbi payments as outflows pressure eases

The People's bank of China (PBoC) has scrapped a restriction on cross-border capital movement imposed in January as outflows pressure eases. This was the first concrete move to loosen capital controls since authorities began imposing curbs designed to shield the renminbi from downward pressure last year.

Chinese financial institutions are no longer required to maintain a balance of inflows and outflows when processing cross-border renminbi payments. Joerg Wuttke, president of the European Union Chamber of Commerce in China, said that the PBoC has delivered the latest instructions orally and written regulation are likely in June that would specify due-diligence requirements for banks to process renminbi payments.

The move suggests the authorities are increasingly confident they have weathered the country’s worst-ever bout of capital outflow. That said, other recent curbs on capital outflow, notably a crackdown on foreign acquisitions by foreign companies, remain.

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