The government often takes great pains to ensure that nothing potentially “embarrassing” happens immediately before or during major political events such as the Two Meetings, the October 1 National Day holiday, or the Party Plenum, explained Chovanec in an email.

“In China, everything’s political, and there’s always something on the political calendar… to justify government intervention to shore up markets,” he says. “One could say that’s part of the problem, why the time for making tough choices always seems to be just around the corner but never arrives.”

Formally agreeing on the pace at which China can reform its finances will probably be high on the agenda next week. Another possible significance to the timing is that, by making the yuan at least appear to fluctuate with the market, the PBoC can claim a “win” for advancing reform. The fact that it is driving currency speculators out of the market also makes what’s normally a politically delicate item of reform an easier sell to more conservative officials at the Two Meetings.

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