Hu Xiaolian, head of the State Administration of Foreign Exchange, has repeated China's decision to pursue gradual exchange rate reform in an essay published in Qiushi, one of the Communist Party's main theoretical journals, on the eve of President Hu Jintao's visit to the United States. Hu Xiaolian, also a vice governor of the central bank, said the surplus in international payments, boosted by China's enormous trade surplus, made domestic monetary policies more difficult. "In recent years, the huge surplus in international payments as well as excessive foreign exchange reserve growth has distorted domestic money supply," she wrote. "This makes it harder for China to leverage its monetary policy tools and jeopardizes the effect of macroeconomic controls." China's foreign exchange reserves are the world's largest at US$875.1 billion by the end of March.