英国《金融时报》 凯文•布朗 新加坡, 杰夫•代尔 北京报道
The European Union made a rare appearance on Asia’s front pages this week, grabbing the headlines with its €750bn bail-out fund for Greece and other debt burdened eurozone countries.
The sudden surge of interest did not last long – the story was back on the inside pages the following day, competing for space with Asia’s dramatic economic recovery, forecast by theAsian Development Bankto deliver growth of 7.5 per cent this year.
然而这种突然飙升的兴趣没有持续多久。第二天，相关新闻就回到了报纸内页，与亚洲强劲经济复苏的消息争抢版面。亚洲开发银行(Asian Development Bank)预计，该地区经济今年将增长7.5%。
Yet there are real grounds for concern about the impact of the European crisis in the region, especially if uncertainty is prolonged. Most dramatically, it could delay the expected revaluation of China’s currency, the renminbi, against the US dollar.
There had been speculation that Beijing was on the verge of acting, but the crisis has given support to the commerce ministry and other parts of the government that oppose an appreciation because of its possible impact on exports.
Qian Wang, an economist at JPMorgan, says the revaluation is likely to happen eventually. But the crisis in Europe “may cause the Chinese policymakers to wait a bit and watch for clearer signs of the fallout on the global economy”.
There are concerns, too, about the impact on Asian exports to Europe. Sheng Laiyun, spokesman for the National Bureau of Statistics, admitted on Tuesday the Greek crisis would hit exports, although the extent of the impact was unclear.
人们还担忧危机对亚洲向欧洲出口的影响。中国国家统计局(National Bureau of Statistics)新闻发言人盛来运周二承认，希腊危机将影响出口，尽管尚不清楚这种影响的程度。
Suzlon Energy, India’s largest wind-turbine maker, said yesterday that buyers in Europe were postponing orders because of the impact of the debt crisis on fund-raising for renewable energy projects.
Asian monetary policy may already have been affected by Europe’s strains. The Bank of Korea yesterday held its base rate at 2 per cent, even though Kim Choong-soo, the governor, said the country’s output gap had “almost closed” and forecast upward price pressures in the second half of the year.
欧洲的紧张局势，可能已经对亚洲货币政策造成影响。韩国央行(Bank of Korea)昨日将基准利率维持在2%的水平，尽管行长金仲秀(Kim Choong-soo)表示，韩国已经“几乎填补”了“产出缺口”，预计今年下半年将出现价格上行压力。
This suggested that rates might have gone up but for the governor’s observation that “downside risks are emerging” from Europe. Malaysia’s central bank, which meets today, may provide a further indication of how central bankers are viewing events.
The crisis may also be having an impact on government fund-raising. Indonesia this week trimmed a planned bond issue from $750m (€590m, £505m) to $500m, suggesting that market volatility was the cause. Investors are carefully monitoring other planned sovereign issues, including a M$3bn ($933m, €734m, £627m) offer from Malaysia expected next month.
Officials are apt to dismiss suggestions that these straws in the wind could be harbingers of wider problems, arguing that the region will be protected by its enormous foreign currency reserves and substantial current account surpluses, combined with its generally low direct exposure to southern Europe.
Amando Tetangco, governor of the Philippine central bank, told the Financial Times that Asian nations had learnt the lessons of the 1997-98 Asian financial crisis, setting up mechanisms such as the Chiang Mai Initiative Multilateralisation agreement, a $120bn network of bilateral currency swaps deals.
菲律宾央行行长阿曼多•特唐科(Amando Tetangco)向英国《金融时报》表示，亚洲各国已吸取了1997-98年亚洲金融危机的教训，建立了相关机制，比如“清迈倡议多边化协议”(Chiang Mai Initiative Multilateralisation，CMIM)，这是一个规模高达1200亿美元的双边货币互换协议框架。
However, the potential for contagion can be seen clearly in the iTraxx SovX Asia-Pacific index, which measures movements in the price of insurance against defaults on Asian sovereign bonds, moved from 110 basis points on May 4 to 180bp on May 7 as concerns spread about Greece’s problems. It has since fallen back to about 130bp.
然而，从衡量亚洲主权债务违约保险价格走势的Markit iTraxx SovX亚太指数(iTraxx SovX Asia-Pacific index)，人们可以清楚地看出欧洲危机有可能蔓延。由于对希腊问题的担忧扩散，该指数从5月4日的110个基点，升至5月7日的180个基点。从那之后，该指数重新降至130个基点左右。
Yang-Myng Hong, credit analyst at Nomura in Hong Kong, says one risk factor is the potential withdrawal of $1,800bn of interbank claims held by European banks. Mr Hong says he thinks Asian banks have enough liquidity to offset such fund flows, pointing out that the system withstood the withdrawal of close to $600bn by European banks in the two quarters to March 2009.
The bottom line for Asia, though, is that rapid growth is not a complete defence against contagion of the financial system. As Wayne Swan, Australia’s treasurer, put it this week: “Greece is a really stunning reminder there are still risks in the global economy”.
Additional reporting by Roel Landingin and Peter Smith
罗尔•兰丁金(Roel Landingin)和彼得•史密斯(Peter Smith)也对本文有所贡献