China's foreign debt grows

Updated: 2016-09-28 10:06


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BEIJING - China's outstanding foreign debt returned to growth in the second quarter as companies' deleveraging process drew to a close, the country's foreign exchange regulator said Tuesday.

The debt settled at $1.39 trillion at the end of June, up 2 percent from a quarter earlier, the State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE) said in a statement.

The increase reversed a falling trend seen since the second quarter of 2015. On a quarterly basis, the debt dropped 3.6 percent at the end of March and declined 7.4 percent at the end of 2015.

Analysts had attributed the previous downward movement to a strengthening dollar, which encouraged Chinese firms to speed up repaying their dollar-denominated liabilities.

The SAFE predicted foreign debt to stabilize further as authorities take measures to improve borrowing overseas.

It also promised better debt management and strengthened supervision of capital flow.

A majority of China's foreign debt owed to foreign creditors results from short-term borrowing, while long- and medium-term outstanding external debt accounted for 38 percent, data showed.