LONDON, June 8 (Xinhua) -- The policy chairman of the City of London Corporation, one of the most powerful financial institutions in Europe, said on Wednesday that China is moving toward Market Economy Status.
"China is moving toward Market Economy Status. We are seeing a whole load of reform that are opening up the Chinese economy, and we hear this from the Chinese people as much as we do from Western people," Mark Boleat, policy chairman of the City of London Corporation said in an interview with Xinhua.
"So, it is a question of when and not if China has Market Economy Status," Boleat added, ahead of a visit to Shanghai which begins on Friday.
During his three-day visit to Shanghai, Boleat will join a roundtable discussion on "New Opportunities for International Investment under Emerging Pattern."
He is also scheduled to meet with representatives of leading Chinese businesses and Shanghai-based British financial industry figures, as well as to visit the Shanghai Clearing House, Shanghai Stock Exchange and China Financial Futures Exchange.
On Wednesday, Boleat also praised the growing momentum behind the internationalization of Chinese currency the renminbi (RMB).
Noting the issue of a Chinese government renminbi bond in London's financial markets on the day, the chairman said it's an evidence of continued progress for the RMB's internationalization.
The Chinese Finance Ministry issued three-year government bonds worth 3 billion RMB (about 457 million U.S. dollars) on the London Stock Exchange (LSE).
This is the first sovereign RMB bond issued outside China, and also the world's first local currency sovereign bond issued outside the domestic market.
"Only today at the London Stock Exchange we have had the launch of a Chinese government RMB bond -- the first issue of such a security outside China and that again is just an indication of what sort of progress we are seeing in the internationalization of what is now a really important currency," Boleat said.
"There has been great progress on the internationalization of the RMB, London is the largest offshore center in the Western Hemisphere for RMB clearing; we have seen a big increase in the volume of business," he added.
The European Union parliament earlier this month voted against China getting Market Economy Status, alleging that China's excess production capacity and cheap exports are hurting EU jobs.