Speculations have been mounting the current governor or China´s central bank PBOC, Zhou Xiaochuan, is up for retirement soon. Bloomberg asked financial experts who they expect might be the next central banker. Financial expert Victor Shih explains why he puts his cards on Yi Gang.
Yi, who holds a doctorate in economics from the University of Illinois, has been managing the country’s foreign-exchange reserves, now at $4 trillion, since July 2009. This year he also became a deputy director of the Communist Party’s Office of the Central Leading Group for Financial and Economic Affairs, a key position in mapping out policies.
A onetime competitive swimmer who studied and worked in the U.S. from 1980 to 1994, Yi joined the PBOC in 1997 and often represents China at international meetings.
“As the Fed begins to contract global liquidity and move U.S. rates higher, it is more important to have someone with extensive understanding of the linkages between external and domestic liquidity,” said Victor Shih, a professor at the University of California at San Diego who studies China’s politics and finance, and wasn’t a survey respondent. “In that area, I think Yi Gang has the deepest experience,” Shih said in an e-mailed response to questions.
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