(Adds Lagarde comments, details on yuan entry)
By David Lawder
WASHINGTON, Sept 30 The International Monetary
Fund said on Friday it set new relative amounts of the
currencies in its Special Drawing Rights currency basket,
reflecting the entry of China's yuan for the first time on
The IMF said each SDR, the Fund's unit of account, will be
made up of 0.58252 U.S. dollars, 0.38671 euros, 1.0174 Chinese
yuan, 11.900 yen and 0.085946 pounds sterling. The relative
amounts reflect weightings determined last year based on average
exchange rates over the past three months. The amounts are now
fixed for five years.
The inclusion of the yuan marks the first change in the
IMF's currency basket since the 1999 adoption of the euro. It
also marks a significant milestone for the yuan, as the Fund has
declared it to be a "freely usable currency."
"The Renminbi's inclusion reflects the progress made in
reforming China's monetary, foreign exchange, and financial
systems, and acknowledges the advances made in liberalizing and
improving the infrastructure of its financial markets," IMF
Managing Director Christine Lagarde said in a statement.
She added that continuation of these efforts will help
strengthen the international monetary and financial system,
which in turn will support growth and stability in China and
Some contend, however, that while the step reflects
progress, China has far more work to do to make its currency and
economy more market-driven and open. Without this, the yuan will
not achieve true reserve currency status, U.S. Treasury
Secretary Jack Lew said on Thursday.
(Reporting by David Lawder; Editing by Bernard Orr)